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How Stuffed Animals Can Help Kids

A Thank-You Letter to My Child's Lovey

Dear Bun,

Please forgive me for misspelling your name. I'm not sure if it's Bun or Boon, since it's difficult to tell what my son has actually named you. What I do know is that for the past two years, he has loved every inch of your stuffed bunny body. In our small family, I'm proud to consider you a member. To my son, you are as important to him as his parents, and I'm more than happy to share this high honor with you. While I want to protect him from all harm, you're able to do something special for him that I never could.

Comforting him in the dark, when he's bundled up in his crib all alone, has been your greatest gift. Ever since he first laid eyes on you, you two have been inseparable. There have been nights where I hear him stir and I watch him search for you in a panic. Thankfully, you're never too far away and he's always able to get back to sleep. I honestly don't think I could have done sleep training without you.

And it's not just sleep where you shine; you come on every adventure we've ever planned. You've accompanied him to museums and parades, on planes and cross-country road trips. When we nudge him into new and unfamiliar situations that challenge his small world, you're always right there to give him that quick hug and boost of encouragement.

Yet it's that same deep love that my son has for you that has caused me to write to you today. Bun, you're looking a little worse for wear. I've sewn the holes on your body more times than I can count, but they now seem to appear faster than I can patch them up. Since you have become the de facto pacifier, the adorable stars on your ears and feet have all but disappeared from years of chewing and playing. With each turn in the washing machine, I'm grateful, albeit a little surprised, to see that you've survived. I tried to help relieve some of the pressure and attention you get by buying another one of you, but of course this did nothing. He loves you even harder, and while he plays with this doppelgänger, it's you he truly yearns for.

I'm not sure how much longer you're going to last, but I will do everything in my power to protect you. After all, you're family, and you've helped raise that happy and energetic boy who loves you so. Your tired eyes have seen every smile, play session, and milestone, and your worn coat has comforted every tear, nightmare, and fear. Hang in there, Bun. Hang in there. You've got a world of adventures ahead, and he needs you.

Love,
A Grateful Parent

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Laurel Elis
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