When Jacob was little I made him a small book out of fabric. It was before everything kids owned had a monogram or applique. He loved that book. That was close to 40 years ago and would you believe we still have it? Check it out. More like a rag now as it was washed so many times. He hasn’t cared a thing about it in decades but I can’t bring myself to throw it away.
Often children attach to something that becomes their security blanket. Their emotional support. My sister’s silky nightgown became her daughter’s must-have blanket. My granddaughter had a small ‘lovey’ that was her comfort at bedtime. I can’t say Jacob HAD to have the book to go to bed at night, but it was something he held tightly and seemed to know where it was at all times.
There is another thing that he did get attached to many years ago. A toy called Disney Tunes KidClips. Each came with various clips, one song a piece. All were Disney related. The name of this blog is because of his attachment to the Hakuna Matata clip from the movie, Lion King. No matter how many different clips we tried, he always went back to Hakuna Matata.
For more years than I can remember, that toy went with him when he left home. In the car, to his day program, to church, etc. It definitely served the purpose of a security blanket of sorts. Thankfully, it had no volume controls so the sound level wasn’t too bad, or so loud to totally annoy those around him.
Although, in his Sunday School class, it was frustrating for his classmates to voice prayers. “Lord, help my sick” Hakuna Matata, what a wonderful phrase, “brother to get well soon.” “I pray for my grandma” Hakuna Matata ain’t no passing craze. “who has to move.” It means no worries “My dog” for the rest “ran away.” of your days. It’s our problem-free philosophy. “In Jesus name,” Hakuna Matata! “Amen” His whole class was great about having the lesson and prayer time with Jacob playing Hakuna Matata as the background music.
And while it was a sturdy toy and a battery would last a LONG time, they did eventually break or wear out. Or, he’d lose one. Or hide one. And yet, he HAD to have it to carry when he went somewhere. We needed to make sure to have a back-up or four or ten. At some point, they were no longer manufactured and became harder and harder to find. We would scour Ebay to be sure we always had a decent stash. Even then, sometimes there would be mild panic when we couldn’t find one. If we didn’t have a back up we were in trouble. Have you ever experienced a ‘security blanket’ missing moment with your child? Yes, like that with Jacob. Not pretty.
We kept a tracker fob on the current one he was using because it wasn’t unusual for him to hide it while at his day program. Maybe stick it on a book shelf. A desk and cover it up. Under the couch (a favorite). Then when it was time to leave, multiple staff members would look everywhere with no success. BUT, I knew better than to drive away without it because the next morning, he’d conduct a frantic search for it in the van before leaving home. The tracker with app came in handy more times than I can count.
Then something changed. I’d go to pick him up and one of his teachers would say, “Jacob hasn’t played with his Hakuna Matata all day.” Often it was exactly where he set it down when he entered the building. They were realizing that he may have lost interest in it. At home, he has so many toys and things to keep him entertained that he rarely played with it there. But away from home, it was the one thing he wanted nearby. We decided to do a two week test. Send it with him and note whether or not he looked for it, picked it up, carried it around playing his favorite song.
After the testing period, his teacher said, “you know how kids outgrow their security blanket at some point?” “I think Jacob has outgrown Hakuna Matata.” “He doesn’t need it here anymore.” WOW! Just like that! It was hard to believe he really didn’t ‘need’ it. We decided then to quit sending it. And you know what? My boy has grown up and will go days without it.
I have no idea if he will find a new ‘security blanket’ and if so, what it might be. But for the time being, he’s sure of himself and manages fine without one. Good for you Jacob!!
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