Why am I posting a picture of this truly ugly Thing? This is Googlie! I have had Googlie for as long as I can remember… which by the look of him is a very very long time. Every time we move, Googlie comes along too and is placed somewhere in the back of my closet. Most of the time I forget about him, until we are ready to move again. But Googlie fell out of my closet today and his timing could not have been better.
Yesterday while I was changing the sheets on Jay’s bed I actually counted how many stuffed animals he had that he has been sleeping with. He has been sleeping with 17 stuffed animals, 3 pillow pet things, 2 giant throw pillows, 4 regular pillows and three old night gown shirts of mine. That is a grand total of 29, just in case math is not your thing. Every night he spends 5 minutes perfectly setting them around him creating a cocoon effect around his body. I get it, I understand his need for creating a safe and familiar area. In fact there was a whole discussion on one of the parent support forums I subscribe to about kids on the spectrum and their attachment to stuffed animals. But surely even all those parents would agree that 29 is a little much?
I am a firm believer of picking and choosing your battles, and honestly this was one battle I did not think was worthy of addressing. I mean who is it hurting? He is not carrying them to school or anywhere else. The few times he has had friends over to spend the night, he puts them all way accept for his one special one… and honestly even at 10 … most of the kids still have something. They are embarrassed to admit it until my sweet son brings out his. But still it bugged me. All night I stayed up going over and over it in my head. Is this a healthy thing? Should I say something? If I do say something will it create a meltdown? You see this is what us Asperger parents do. We constantly are second guessing ourselves and trying to predict the future. I am sure all parents do this… but not to the OCD way we do. Finally I gave into sleep and well slept.
This morning as I walked into my closet to get dress, guess who was sitting on the floor? Yup my Googlie. He stared up at me with his almost worn off eyes, matted hair and reattached mouth. I picked up the ugly little guy, and I say that in a way that only a mother can because no one but me better talk smack about my Googlie, and laid him on my bed.
As Jay was coming downstairs he happened to look into my room and see Googlie on my bed. Now my children have heard the stories of him but I don’t think they have ever had the great pleasure of meeting him. He was so excited and called up to Grace to come down and see for herself. Grace took one luck at my Googlie and said,” Mom what is that thing? It looks like a dog has been chewing on it.” To that Jay, my hero said,” Awww… don’t say that. I think he is cute. Mom can I inherit him. I know exactly where I would put him on my bed. He is special and deserves to be there. I like having special things around me.”
And so the Monster in my Closet taught me something today. Everyone wants to feel special and everyone likes to have things around them that make them feel that way. And if it take 29 special things to make my son feel that way… well what kind of mother would I be to take that way? One day I hope that my son is able to see and feel how special he is without having to bury himself among inanimate objects, but until that day… well I guess we will just have to make sure we add 5 minutes to our bedtime ritual.
And as for Googlie… maybe one day if he still wants him I will let Jay inherit him, but for now he has been safely put back on the closet shelf… but this time I can see him!