Wednesday, October 24, 2007
My 2-year-old can't fall asleep without clutching corners of his tattered, blue, no-longer-soft blankie.
Tonight, tired and cranky, he rustled around, trying to get comfortable. In the process of getting the blankie just right under his head, he lost a corner.
"I can't find my corner!" he said, alarmed.
I helped him, and once he was confident that I had, in fact, given him a corner and not a mediocre edge, he settled down again, a corner in each hand.
I've watched him do this for months, maybe a year. He pulls along the sides of the knit blankie until he gets to a corner. Now, though, two are frayed so much that he has deemed them unacceptable. If I offer one of those, he'll say, "No, that's a yucky one." And we have to find a still-intact one.
He grips the precious corner in between his thumb and index finger. It's calming. When he gets hurt, he seeks a corner. Same when he's sleepy.
So it makes me wonder: Do we all have corners? Something we need, perhaps intangible even, to get by when we're hurt or tired or sad? I haven't thought enough about it to come up with mine. But I bet we do. Or we should.
I've also wondered what happens when in a month or two, the other corners fray. Will we have a catastrophe? Will he adapt? Will he learn to comfort himself? Will he just find a substitute corner?