I would like to share something with you. A few months ago I PANICKED. I found a place on Pookie’s face, not even at a seam, where there was a tear in his fur (probably a run from when they placed his eyes).
Now, as you know from reading this blog, I am a reasonably competent seamstress, and I have done quilting, embroidery, sewing, and many related tasks (including household mending), for many years. On a factual level, I should have found this challenge rather simple and unassuming.
However, it was not just a factual case.
This is an emotional case.
Pookie is not, factually, my son – but, in many ways, he is Charlie’s proxy. When discovering this tear (I have the feeling it had been a long day, but don’t remember for sure), I had an honest, I-can’t-breathe panic attack. I’d like to think, based on my experience with my siblings and baby sitting for others, that I would not panic over something equivalent to a bump or a scratch, easily bandaged and cared for.
But Pookie won’t heal on his own from a little scratch, and I couldn’t even figure out how it had happened. Possibly while I brushed him after a bath? And the bath had him smelling wrong, too… And with Pookie, there is all the emotional background from Charlie, too, and I felt I’d let Pookie and Charlie down in so many ways. I felt I’d “ruined” Pookie. I sobbed and sobbed, and was inconsolable for a long time. I don’t even know how to explain the layers of fear and guilt, not keeping him safe, wanting him not to be hurt, wanting him to be fixed… and underneath, not even knowing which “him” I was talking about…
Hubby had the presence of mind to realize where I was emotionally, give me lots of hugs, and essentially forbade me from fixing Pookie that night, knowing that I am far more likely to make mistakes (and make things worse) when overwrought.
As it was, in the morning’s light, I could see that he was not irreparable, and yet I needed to work myself up to actually fixing him. I had discovered the wound before Christmas. I took the materials with me over our Christmas trip, but didn’t bring myself to doing it there or in the car in either direction. I was honestly very worried that I would make it worse, and some part of me was also worried that I would hurt him.
I had found the perfect pale blue shade of embroidery floss, and at some point, I steeled my nerves and went for it…
The close up at the beginning of this post is where the tear is (not horribly visible, since both his fur and stuffing are a very light shade). Also, I think this picture might be post mending, but honestly, I don’t remember for sure and can’t tell… Funnily enough as I write this, I could have sworn it was near the other eye. And, if this is post-mend, it’s even possible I put the circle below in the wrong place, but I added that to the picture right after it happened… By the time the tear was mended, it was actually invisible and nearly impossible to feel, too. Much better than I could ever have hoped for, actually.
I was very proud, when I told Hubby the results that evening. And Pookie got lots and hugs and kisses, too.
It was hard. It was scary. It brought up so many emotions. I don’t know if I have a point or a conclusion to this story, but wanted to share how sometimes I get surprised by the intensity of my grief, and yet somehow, manage.
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