This is to my Father's glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves
to be my disciples. John 15:8

Pooh's Face

>> Thursday, September 13, 2007

My parents have been really good about setting up a home away from home at their house for my boys. They have their own beds, their own booster chairs, their own toys, cups, name it. This makes going to visit grandma and papa very easy, especially when mommy has to drop one of them off while taking the other to the doctor, which I will be doing tomorrow. I don't have to pack up half my house. One of the ways my mom achieved this was to take advantage of garage sales for toys. One of the toys she "scored" early on after Elijah learned to walk was a Pooh Bear that was shaped like a rocking horse. He was stuffed, but you could sit on him and rock, and when you pressed his ear, he talked and played music, alternately. We thought it was fantastic. Elijah was terrified of him. I mean he would NOT be in the same room with Pooh if he could avoid it, and if he could not avoid it, he would stick close to mom or dad and whimper. He did not like Pooh.

This was such a shame to all of us, because this was such a cute toy....we wanted him to like it! Every time we'd go to grandma and papa's, we'd pull out Pooh and try and coax Elijah over to him, but he would have none of it. One day, after weeks (maybe even months) of this, we decided we were going to "rip off the band-aid", so to speak, and just put him on Pooh to show him there was nothing to be afraid of. He screamed and kicked and I really regretted trying things that way....I was sure we had just traumatized our child for life. I could just see him in a few years on Dr. Phil..."They forced me to ride on the Pooh Bear!" But funny enough, it worked! He was red-faced, and tear-stained, but he sat on Pooh's back, held onto the handles, and looked up at me with a sheepish grin of realization. Pooh wasn't so bad after all!

In fact, Pooh was so great that he became all he would talk about after that! He had overcome his fear! We would be in stores and anything with Pooh on it would be pointed at with glee (do you know how much Pooh bear stuff there is out there? Just try going to Target sometime and keep'll lose track pretty quick, I imagine!). He was now enthralled with all things Winnie.

When Micah was about ready to join us last year, we decided we would give Elijah a stuffed Pooh "from" his new brother Micah. Elijah then "gave" Micah a stuffed Tigger. We were starting things off teaching them they were buddies, just like Tigger and Pooh. Elijah latched on to Pooh and has never let go. Since that time, there have been other characters that have crept into Elijah's heart....Mickey Mouse, Little Einsteins, Max & Ruby....but every night, when he goes to bed, he sleeps with the Pooh Bear his brother gave him in the hospital.

In the past year, I have picked up Pooh Bear 100 times from 100 different places, washed vomit off of him, put his shirt back on, and tucked him in every night. I hadn't looked at him very closely, though, until tonight. I don't know why I did. I was just sitting on the couch, watching my kids play, and Elijah had given me Pooh to keep safe from his brother. Pooh is showing signs of age. No one would notice from a distance, but the fur around his mouth and nose is no longer fluffy. It's matted down smooth. His eyes are barely visible for all the fuzz that's developed around them, and his t-shirt is stretched to the limit, because my son loops his arm through it every night as he sleeps. Pooh is getting older. That means my boy is, too.

Obviously, I know that my boys are growing. I see them learning new things and outgrowing their clothes. I know they aren't babies anymore. But because I am so close to them, and it happens so gradually, I think I have had a hard time seeing how much time has actually passed. How old they actually are. I saw it in Pooh Bear tonight. My son is old enough to have a bear that is wearing out. He's not a baby anymore.


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