Thursday, 23 July 2009

What constitutes a tragedy?

So my darling 4-year-old has finally finished her first year of big school and to mark the occasion, an enormous Bring and Buy sale was held at the end of last week. A Bring and Buy, for those of you not in the know, is where you do your best to have a good old tidy up and sort out, finally clearing out the broken plastic tat that your child has never played with, only for it to be replaced the very same day with another child's tat that your little darling has excitedly spent your money on. That is, if they don't end up buying back what was originally theirs - I understand this is common.

Luckily, there was less plastic and more cuddly toys brought home this time. And Renée's cuddly toy of choice - a rather, ahem, delightful, formerly white, teddy bear with a pink and blue bobbled hat sewn on. It was immediately christened 'Bobble' and taken to bed where it spent its first night cuddled up in my daughter's arms. Since then, it has not left her side...even taking precedence over her already-established 'guys' (as she calls them) at the breakfast table. She is nothing, if not fickle. Indeed, never has a new 'guy' been welcomed into the fold with such open arms since Woof Woof and Woof Woof first made their appearance. To further concrete its status, Bobble even accompanied us on a camping trip at the weekend where it spent the night under a tent...narrowly missing out being weed on by Edie in the morning (but that's another story entirely).

However, on the journey home, a scuffle broke out in the back of the car...resulting in Bobble's 'bobble' being torn off by little sister Edie. Whoops. Despite my reassurance that the bobble could be sewn back on, Renée was distraught and spent almost an entire hour crying over the dismemberment of her beloved Bobble. Still, I kept the bobble, putting it in the side pocket of the car, promising to sew it on when we got home.

I forgot.

And then I was too busy.

And then I forgot again - despite being reminded every evening and every morning since the incident.

This morning Renée reminded me again.

And I could hold off no longer. She really had been very patient and understanding.

So I took a deep breath in, braced myself for a search of the sewing kit and a bit of effort and walked out to the car to retrieve the bobble from the side door.


It wasn't there.

It really wasn't. I searched EVERYWHERE. Believe me - I searched under car seats, behind car seats, under dirty rubber mats - I DID NOT want to have to break this tragic news to my child. I honestly didn't think I had the strength to cope with the repercussions.

But alas, I had no choice.

I walked slowly back into the house.

I knelt down beside Renée, who was playing on the computer, took her hand and looked straight into her eyes.

"Renée, darling. The bobble has gone. It's not there anymore. I'm so sorry."

The realisation was immediately apparent on her face and her bottom lip started to tremble and before I could say anything more she was in my arms crying, big sobbing tears, whilst I held her against me, kissing the top of her head. We stayed like that for some time.

And I know it's not a tragedy, and I'm grateful for that. But to my poor innocent child, it is as much tragedy as she's known.


  1. Oh, bless her. Poor thing. They feel these things so strongly. And there's no real way to predict which will be a tragedy and which will go unnoticed. I hope she recovers from her loss very soon.

  2. Oh no! Poor thing, but I am sure she will recover quite swiftly, I often resort to some sort of bribery along the food line if the sadness looks really set in. Hope she's not too sad now and that you are not feeling too guilty love karen x

  3. in cases like this, including popped balloons, all mislaid items, lost toys, WE LIE.

    We have a selection of fairies at our disposal. Sometimes they are trapped by accident inside balloons and when the balloon pops the fairies escape and to say thank you they send a wish scattering down, so stop blubbing and look for something that might be a wish like that raindrop, seedhead or leaf. If small items go missing sometimes there are fairies who have taken them because they needed something just like it to do an important job with it. They will return it when they have finished their important work but it might take a couple of months. ... and on and on and on.

    fairies do other things too, of course, to say thank you for your patience in believing crap. they have delivered cuddly toys to the doorstep and cakes to the table.

    i am unrepentant. even when we found out our electricity supply was brought by unicorns who charged up their horns then hid behind the light switch.

  4. It really is such a heartbreak...poor thing!

  5. Too sad for words.

    There's only thing for it hun. You'll have to get the knitting needles out and make a brand new bobble for Bobble. Either that or re-name him Bob.

  6. Awww, bless her little cotton socks. I hope she's ok, and you too! It's heartbreakingly sad when your children are sad isn't it?

  7. Oh Poor wee thing. Isn't it amazing how they can love so quickly and so fiercly. Thankfully they can move on very quickly too!

    On a different note I finally got my award from you posted and a link back to you!

  8. Oh the poor little thing. They seem so heartbroken. Can you make another bobble? Or wouldn't it be the same?

  9. Poor Renee. And in 20 years time, will she still remember? I still wonder where my mother put my new, pink umbrella when I was five...

  10. Oh, I know when they get so hurt about their favorite things. Gratefully, they move on quickly at that age.

  11. A tragedy of the worst kind I fear.. was going to suggest a pom pom transplant but from the looks of your Twittering someone else has too! Last time I made them I was a Girl Guide! SC experienced similar drama recently when we killed off her cabbages by accident! Ooops.. Im no Alan Titchmarsh thats for sure! x

  12. I always feel so bad for the kids in cases like that. I try to remember it's a learning experience.

  13. Aw, that is SO unbelievably sad! Poor mite.

    But here's a bit of advice: sellotape. Seriously. When Mister Cat's tail fell off, a few rounds of sticky tape kept it in place for the crucial six week period until Flea next visited Grandma (with her magic sewing skills)

    I can tell that right now you're in awe of my parenting skills. People so often are ;-)

  14. I'm always amazed by how Totally Tragic things seem to young children. When FP gets crying about something, there's no stopping her. Full-on sobbing over the tiniest things. Awwww. Good luck with Bobbless(!)

  15. Oh poor babe. You could do that pom pom thing with wool etc, get her all involved to make bobble a new bobble??

    I so hate it when you see them get so sad. Hugs. x

  16. Ooooh.

    How about a reward for being a brave girl and a forgiving big sister? Is there anything that could help reduce the woe?

  17. Oh poor her! I can just imagine how hard that must have been for you as well.

  18. Oh poor thing. Is there any chance of a bobble-ectomy?

  19. Ah the poor thing! They feel things at such a large magnitude at that age. I know, like a pet, it can't be replaced per se, but hopefully you can find something for her to fall in love with again.

  20. awwww the poor thing! I have been there with lost toys and it breaks my heart! I hope she gets over it soon xxx

  21. Tasha - I know!! They're such sensitive little lambs - although with this one I just knew it was going to be a big one...she'd been asking me every hour for three days to sew it couldn't have been more traumatic for her!!

    MGM - Thanks hun - yep she's feeling slightly better today but only because I've promised her I'll make her another pom pom...hope I haven't set myself up for failure!! And yes, food almost always works with Edie, but not so much with Renée unfortunately! I hope your little M isn't too miserable with her chickenpox xx

    Grit - I LOVE this comment - Oh how I wish I had read it before the incident - I would have so handled the situation differently!! Next time something like this happens I'll ask your advice first. You're so right - fairies having taken it would have softened the blow. Why I feel compelled to tell my 4-year-old the truth I don't know!

    OP - It really was. I hate to think how she'll react with a 'proper' broken heart! Doesn't bear thinking about just yet!

    Mamma Po - hee hee - yes Bob - that's a good compromise...It was a pom pom bobble (and I was once able to knit, but sadly those skills left me long ago) - so I've decided to make a brand new pom pom for her (as suggested by a number of clever people). She's going to choose the wall and my craft skills will be put to the test. Fingers crossed!!

  22. notSupermum - Thanks honey - yeah she was much worse than me (even though it was all my fault and I should have shouldered the burden a bit more). I can't for the life of me think what happened to it - it must have ben thrown out with all the other rubbish which accumulated in the side pocket of the car - silly, silly me!

    Modern Mom - I now - it's amazing how much they can feel at such a young age...but yes, like you say, hopefully (!) she'll move on just as quickly. And I can't tell you how excited I was to finally be able to get in to your blog - how many widgets did you remove?? Other people are having problems with mine so maybe I should remove some too :-(( Will pop over to yours in a mo and see the award xx

    Sandy - yes she really was completely heartbroken poor love - and yes I have taken the advice of a few people and I'm going to make her another bobble. I've already told her and she was very happy!

    Catharine - Oh you never forget!! What did happen to your pink umbrella?? - I think you ought to ask your Mother!! And yes, she was genuinely heartbroken the poor love.

    septembermom - Yes, they do move on quickly. They're so up and down at that age - it's amazing that they can function at all - so distraught one minute and happy as anything the next. She's still a bit sad about the bobble though, but I have promised to make her another one!

  23. That Girl - Oh I know - it was a true tragedy - and yes, on the advice of a number of clever people (much cleverer than me), I have decided to make her a new pom pom and let her choose the wool. I think I remember how to do it - two bits of cardboard with hole in the middle - but it has been...ahem...a few years, so it may not be of my previous professional standards. And yes - I killed off R's caterpillars a while ago and it was almost a tragedy too. Thankfully one survived to the butterfly stages (phew). Sorry about your cabbages ;-((

    Mwa - Yes that's what I was trying to think about at the time - that she learnt to handle a tragedy when it wasn't really one because it was a good learning xperience - but after seeing her so distraught I wish I'd lied or something! ike Grit says in the comments, I should have said the fairies needed it more than her. It all a learning experience (even more so for the parents)!

    Who's the Mummy - You're right - I am in awe!! Why didn't I think of sellotape - seriously I wish I had have had some in the car - it would have saved me stashing it away (for unsafe keeping)...But sellotape is irrelevant now since there is nothing left to stick on. No, the only thing I can do is to make a new one...

    Really Rachel - Yes Bobless - I like it!! I know - sometimes when my children cry full-on sobbing cried I can't help but just stare at them (if they haven't hurt themselves that is) because I find it truly fascinating that they can get so traumatised by the little things.

    Jo - Yep, I am totally on the case with it now - I've told her I'm going to make a new one and she's all chuffed. Part of me wishes I'd lied and said the fairies had taken it or something, but part of me thinks it's all a learning experience and she needs to experience something like that - either way Supermum willmake it better with her new woolly bobble - yay!!

  24. Iota - Ooh that's a god one - I didn't think about her being such a forgiving big sister - yes she was - although she now needs to forgive me too !! But yes, I do have to make it up to her. A few people have suggested I make a new bobble for 'Bob' so that's what I'm going to do...

    Lady Mama - Aah thanks honey - yes it was hard for me (especially since it was all my fault that it was lost in the first place). So I had to hug her and try to make her feel better whilst knowing all the time that it was all my doing. Hideous!

    Dancinfairy - Yep, that is totally the answer! A new bobble is in the pipeline. Watch this space!

    Natalie - Hi there and welcome! Yep, she felt it good and proper! I thought there was no hope of replacing it so she was going to just have to deal with it, but I am now going to take the advice of a few clever people and make her a new bobble myself (!) Hopefully that will go some way to easing her pain!!

    Amy - Yeah I remember your lost toy incident - it's just heartbreaking isn't it?? At least she still has the toy though - but I suppose when she looks at it she has a reminder every day that the bobble is gone! Although plan is now to make a new one...fingers crossed this one doesn't get ripped off!

  25. Bless her sweet heart. Makes me want to be young again when I think of the simple things that matter to children.

  26. Oh dear, us mummies! Hope she's over it now. x

  27. Ahh bless she sounds just lovely and the "guys" thing is too cute, i think all us girls are guilty of being fickle though aren't we? Maybe that's just me then ..ahem x

  28. awww bless her, but to look on the bright side a missing bobble has to be better then being wee'd on!

  29. ps an award/tag for you at my place today

  30. Poor love, always tragic if they don't understand.

    CJ xx

  31. MOMSWEB - I know! If only life were that simple hey? I hate to be the one to tell her that it's not!

    Reasons - Well it's been a week now and I've finally made the pom pom and only just sewn it on now, so despite it being too big and too wonky, I hope that by the time she wakes up in the morning, she'll finally be over it... Thanks you kind lady for the award - will post and thank you publicly very soon. I send you a big, big kiss. Mwah xxx

    WoB - Hee hee - erm, ahem, i don't think it's just you ( but make sure you don't tell anyone)!! Yes, the 'guys' thing is totally cute - I think she must have got it from Dora or something - Benny the bull has his 'guys'. Funny thing is, Edie now calls them her guys too, like that's the correct word for them. So sweet.

    magnumlady - Oh how right you are - I don't think hubby will ever recover from being peed on. All over him, all over the tent. Silly Mummy for not being quick off the mark!

    CJ - I know - so tragic (and even more so for me because it was all my failt)!! Boo hoo. Bad Mummy ! ;-((

  32. Poor little thing - that was heartbreaking to read.

  33. Ella - Aah - I know - it was awful for her. Although I was pretty pleased because she was so forgiving of her sister...not so good of me to lose it though!