My four year old nephew has a handful of comfort. It is a remnant of soft fabric that he salvaged from a larger blanket that has worn itself out being dragged around. He calls it his “lovie.”
We all have had “lovies”. Mine was an old rag doll that was received so much love and gave so much comfort that it wore itself out. Other children have a stuffed animal or a pillow. These are things that children get attached to that gives them a sense of comfort. They are the sought after thing when the child is distressed or upset.
Some people think that we out-grow our “lovies". They think that it is important that a child give up their talisman that connects them to childhood. They worry that dependence on something like that will stunt the emotional growth of the child.
But when we were in Athens a few years ago, I saw old men sitting around the plaza, talking and threading their worry beads between their fingers. In Cuba I saw women sitting, fingering their rosaries. In high school hallways I see young people cupping in their hands a mobil device, their thumbs tapping away at the screen. “Lovies”!!
And I still have “lovies”. My hot cup of coffee in the morning resting in my lap as I ease into the day; the smell of garlic and onions sizzling in the skillet; the touch of Deb’s fingers running through my hair; the shot of bourbon and taste of olives and cheese as we ease out of the tensions of the day and settle into the calm of the evening; the familiar pillow as I lay down to rest my mind with sleep.
We all need “lovies” to help us know we are going to be OK. Or at least, we need these moments when we can rest in the reality of what and who we are.