Speaking of mysteries, we had one of our very own here today! And while it certainly did not have any sinister hidden plots or murdered English squires, it has definitely left me baffled... and as of yet, it is still unsolved.
Sweet naptimes with Bunny. When I found a "twin bunny" that was the same, except pink, I bought it, thinking it could be a handy replacement. It didn't work that way. Emma was fond of pink bunny, but nothing could ever measure up to Brown Bunny.
I should begin by telling you that Emma fell in love with a certain stuffed bunny when she was only 6 months or so old. This girl had quite the collection of stuffed animals before she was even born, and I never really pushed a certain one on her. It happened quite naturally, and I'm not even sure why.... but this little bean-bag rabbit with long floppy ears and terry cloth covering became her obvious favorite. And as she got older her attachment became even more apparent. Not only did she HAVE to have it at all naptimes and when she went to bed, but it also went everywhere with her. It was carried around while she was playing. It accompanied us to the grocery store, to grandma's house, on car rides and walks, and even to the park. And I can't even tell you how many times in these last four years that I've thought for sure we had lost him. Little kids aren't the best at keeping track of things, you know. Somehow, though, "Bunny" always turned up again, even if it meant retracing our steps through a store or walking an extra mile back to the place on the bike path where he was dropped. As you can imagine, over these 4 1/2 years he has gotten quite faded, threadbare, and worn... his ears have had to be sown back on several times, and the ribbon around his neck is now reduced to a mere frayed string. He is well-loved, that much is obvious.
Bunny even went camping with us!
As you can see from this more recent photograph, Bunny is still ever-present, even if slightly bedraggled.
Now that Emma is older, she no longer carries him everywhere we go. But she will still bring him along on trips to grandma's house, and she will still go and fetch him before she cuddles up to watch a movie or read a book. Most importantly though, he is there every night for bedtime, ready to be tucked in alongside her. Just the other night she even came into our bedroom and woke me up in the middle of the night because she couldn't find him. It was only when I came into her room and discovered him hiding alongside her bed that she could fall contentedly back asleep. So, you can imagine our distress when, tonight, Bunny was no where to be found. We've looked everywhere. In every toy basket and bin, in every nook and cranny of every room. I shook out every blanket on every bed to make sure he wasn't hiding somewhere in there. We picked up every toy to make sure he wasn't laying buried beneath something else. I've searched every cupboard of their little kitchen, as well as any of my cupboards the kids could reach. I checked the trash cans. Removed every cushion off the couch. I've even checked in crazy places like the dryer and the refrigerator (you never know with two little kids and an absent-minded pregnant person). Bunny is simply not there.
It's maddening. Baffling. Ridiculous. How could he NOT be there? Emma had him this morning when she woke up, and while she watched a bit of TV as I showered. And we didn't even leave the house today. Not once. He simply has to be here somewhere.
Thankfully, Emma was resigned to falling asleep without him tonight, after we included him in our prayers and I suggested she could pretend he was on vacation. But I don't know how long that little idea will last.
I must find that rabbit tomorrow. I simply have to. It makes me so sad to see Emma missing him, her constant little friend.
Also, I think I may very well go insane if I don't solve this mystery. Stuffed animals do not simply up and vanish into thin air. Or do they??