The Security Blanket
All of my children have had “security blankets”: that favorite blanket they absolutely can’t live without or get to sleep without.
My third daughter loved her “blankie” so much that she gave it a name. She carried it everywhere for years until it was threadbare and worn. After several years, I discovered that “blankie” would no longer come clean in the wash (that’s if I could sneak him away while my daughter was asleep) and that he had begun to unravel. I continued to patch and spot clean as best I could.
I searched high and low for another “blankie”, but alas, that particular style of blanket was not available. I bought many blankets with similar styles, fabric and color, but my child refused to accept the replacement blankie.
I learned a few things from this which I will gladly pass on to other parents! Firstly, if your child has a special blanket or toy that she seems to prefer, it’s best to go out and purchase at least one “backup” in the same style or pattern while that particular item is still stocked.
For example, my infant son has a favorite blanket which is blue and has a sating border around it. I went out and bought several blue blankets with satin trim when I noticed that he began to want that particular blanket at night when he was going to sleep.
I now have several spare blankets in case his favorite one needs to get washed or-gasp-gets lost or ruined. Today, my son has a stomach virus and he asked for his favorite blankie(in baby talk of course). I was glad that I had the spare blanket when he got sick this morning right before his nap. His blanket got the brunt of the episode, but no worries. I simply handed him the spare and washed the other blanket while he is napping.
When the day finally comes for your child to transition to a blanket free world, I would recommend the book Owen by Kevin Henkes. This wonderful children’s book was the reason my older daughter decided to give up her blanket so many years ago. Her blanket is now stored in a trunk I keep at the foot of my bed, with all of my children’s baby books and keepsakes.
As for my son, he is still young. The day will come when he will give up his blanket, but for now, his blanket is another source of security in a big world he’s just starting to explore.