One of the more delightful things about Harper's personality is her imagination. Though it occasionally slows us down, like when we're getting ready to go somewhere and she wants to bring Pinky. But we can't leave yet because Pinky is sleeping. Pinky is a Beanie Baby bear.
Harper has approximately one zillion stuffed animals and many of them are intimately related to one another. Her little bear in the yellow sleeper? Pooh Bear's baby. Kitty and Elephant? Best friends. Well last night there was a tragedy in the family comprised of Pinky, Penguin (Pinky's mommy), and Yellow Bear (not Pooh Bear's baby, a different yellow bear, who is Pinky's daddy). At some point Penguin had developed a hole. Matt discovered that Harper had been pulling stuffing out of the hole and stuffing it under her covers for Pinky. Well Harper has been known to put non-food items in her mouth, so wads of loose stuffing did not seem to be quality items for Harper to have in bed. Matt, being a safety-conscious and loving father, removed the stuffing and the ruined penguin.
And then hysteria set in.
I went into Harper's room to find her so distraught she could barely speak. She was flailing around on her bed and screaming. I picked her up, along with Pinky and Yellow Bear, and we all hunkered down in the rocking chair. After a little rocking and shushing, Harper finally calmed down long enough to explain why she was so upset.
You see Penguin, being Pinky's mommy, had to feed Pinky. She fed Pinky hot dogs (the stuffing) and that was her job. And when Penguin went away Pinky was so sad and hungry. And Yellow Bear, Pinky's dad, can't feed Pinky because that isn't his job.
"Pinky misses his mommy!" she wailed over and over, "Pinky is so sad."
And also? Pinky missed his hot dogs and was weally weally hungry!
And also? Harper was hadn't been able to fall asleep, was up waaaay too late, and we all know how sleep-deprivation can make a crisis seem much worse than it is.
Finally I just told Harper she and Yellow Bear would have to take extra good care of Pinky, who was obviously having a difficult night. She eventually accepted this and went to sleep.
Today Harper and Pinky seem to have recovered nicely. Although it wouldn't surprise me if, at some time in the future, we revisit the drama. It is hard to lose one you love so dearly, even if that one is a cheap carnival stuffed animal.
Rest in peace Penguin.