Colton is a stuffed animal kid. He has no less than 20 of them in his room that randomly make the rotation into sleeping with him, playing with him, etc. But with all the occasional players, there is one constant: dee dee, Colton's lovey.Colton formed an intense attachment to dee dee at an early age (in fact, I remember blogging about it when Colton was just about 6 months or so, but now I can't seem to find it). Colton sleeps with dee dee every single night (and if he gets lost in the sheets in the middle of the night, we are immediately summoned to Colton's room to find him). Dee dee goes pretty much everywhere with us (although we don't allow him to actually bring dee dee in places...instead he waits in the car seat). When Colton goes to school each day, dee dee waits patiently for his return in the car seat and they have a very happy reunion each afternoon. Colton has even been known to have full on conversations with dee dee. Basically, even though Colton has started to develop real friendships with real children, I would safely say that dee dee is his best friend, his constant companion.
(*on a side note, Levi also has his dee dee that he has an equal, if not greater, attachment to. At least we have an identical fill-in for his, though!)
So imagine our alarm last week when during our Florida trip we returned to our hotel room to discover dee dee was missing. Being paranoid about dee dee getting lost on trips, we have always insisted that he stay in the room while we are travelling, so at first I didn't panic. Colton had spent some time in my sister-in-law's room while I was working out, though, so at first I called her to see if dee dee was there. When she said, no, though, I began to worry. I tore the room apart, looking under every cushion, into every corner, under every sheet. And when there was still no sight of dee dee, I full out started to panic. Especially because Colton was just as eager to find him, and was almost in tears as he realized we couldn't.
The only logical explanation I could think of was that dee dee was accidentally swept up in the housekeeping, so I called down to the front desk to ask. When no one got back to me in what I considered to be a reasonable amount of time, I trekked down to the front desk (in fairness it was quite the walk as we were on the other side of the resort) to alert them of the urgency of the situation. My baby's best friend was missing. And as much as I dreaded the consequences (bad night's sleep...if any at all), I was much more concerned with how I would explain to Colton that dee dee was gone...forever. I just couldn't think of how to do it. What I would say, and how I would deal with the inevitable tears....tears of genuine sadness,...that would follow.
I continued to stalk the front desk, making sure they were checking the laundry and were aware of just how badly we needed dee dee back. And then as we were getting ready to leave for dinner, my sister-in-law mentioned that Colton had most definitely had dee dee when he was in her room (we had had to leave my room because the fire alarm was going off, so he must have brought it downstairs during that and then when she took them back to her room (we had a workout swap arrangement), he brought it). I knew then that dee dee HAD to be in her room. And sure enough when we got back, I immediately went to her room and found dee dee playing hide and seek in the curtains. After all the stress of trying to find him, Colton's face when I showed him dee dee confirmed that the effort was worth it.
Colton was absolutely giddy at having dee dee back with him. And I was absolutely giddy that my little boy wasn't going to have to learn a very hard lesson that day.
Needless to say, dee dee did not leave our room the rest of the trip. In fact, he had a designated resting spot even in the room so we knew where he was at all times.
So thankfully, when we returned to our Va. Beach routine Monday morning, dee dee was right in tow. And I sure was happy to have him there!
|you can catch a glimpse of dee dee in the bottom right corner...about to go down the slide|