Sunday 15 January 2012

Comfort objects and Harry's Giraffe

I think that most people have some sort of teddy or other comfort object that they have had since they were a baby. I have my teddy, who I must admit still sometimes comes out for cuddles when I'm home alone. And Harry has his Giraffe:

Boy with his comfort object giraffe

Giraffe was a present from my brother when Harry was born. Harry hasn't cottoned on to the fact yet that there are actually two Giraffes, after we managed to source a second identical one. He was too young to notice the difference when new Giraffe appeared, and now we rotate them so they are pretty much identical. Giraffe only leaves the house when Harry will be sleeping elsewhere, as I've read far too many sad tales of lost teddies. As a reminder, at my local Tesco for a long time there was a poster above the Customer Service desk saying "Please take us home" along with a picture of dozens of stuffed animals that had been lost in the store.

I prefer Giraffe to live in the airing cupboard. When Harry was younger he would suck on him and make him all soggy, so the airing cupboard gave him the opportunity to dry out a bit. I originally only let Harry have him at bedtime and naptimes, until my friend (a clinical psychologist) told me that I should let him have Giraffe all the time, as he was his comfort object and his source of consistency. So, reluctantly, Giraffe is around most of the time at home now. Luckily Harry is quite happy to leave him at home when we go out. If he hurts himself or he is feeling tired, he always asks for Giraffe (after me of course...most of the time...).

Lately, Giraffe has also started to develop a personality. He talks in a gruff little voice, he says "Harry", "Mummy", "Daddy" and "Mia". Interestingly this corresponded with Mia starting to make noises which Harry interprets as the same words (they aren't, she's not that advanced!). Harry also asks his opinion on things and has little conversations with him. When we are out in the car he will quite often pretend to ring Giraffe on the phone to tell him what we're up to. I'm just waiting for the day when we have to set a place for Giraffe at the table!

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