Today’s show at the Coterie, tripped me up in an unexpected manner.
In truth, I hadn’t really thought it would be an issue when I first read the description of the show to Em and asked if she would like to go. The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane sounded reminiscent of the Velveteen Rabbit, a story line I had also conveniently forgotten, but Em was interested, so I booked it.
The show began and was fine…until the adventures for that haughty self-centered rabbit began. And as I watched the story unfold, and a rabbit change from self-centered and egotistical, to loving and caring, I was reminded of another rabbit, one from my childhood, one also lost.
There is a picture of me, a baby asleep in my crib, with Bunny Rabbit beside me. He must have been new, because he was intact, with his black bow tie and bright felt vest all in yellow. The Bunny Rabbit I remember never sported a vest, and his black bow tie was nothing but a black spot of felt at his throat.
Bunny Rabbit was my best friend, my companion, my comfort. I slept with him each night, loved him until his fabric-covered wire ears would no longer stand up straight and he smelled bad. He survived being put through the washer and when air-drying took too long, an oven on low temp.
My grandmother accidentally left him in an oven once, we left on a road trip, and were far away before she remembered. Hysterical crying on my part necessitated a call to my father’s employer who went over and rescued the clean and dry rabbit from the oven and placed him on my bed to wait for my return.
The years went by, and somehow he was left behind in my mother’s house when I moved to California to live with my dad. When she divorced some eight years later, I was 19, and still in California. My mom arranged for Bunny Rabbit and a host of my other childhood friends to be sent to my former stepbrother’s house just 20 miles away. But after hearing them bitter and hostile on the phone, I just never found the right moment to retrieve Bunny Rabbit and return him to his rightful place in my life.
I abandoned my friend, my confidant, and my constant childhood companion because of a fear of conflict or being in an uncomfortable situation.
That was nearly 30 years ago…
And despite the decades that have passed, I found myself undone watching this show. I thought, “That girl is so lucky. She grew up, had her own child, but she got her bunny back. She never abandoned him, never gave up trying to find him.”
I hate having others see me cry. Strange as it may seem, it is all well and fine to admit to crying, but I don’t want someone to see me actually in the act of it. I practically bolted from the door, ran out of Crown Center and into my car, where the tears really hit. And once I had explained it all, as I drove slowly home feeling run over and spent, Em cried too.
For a little, somewhat unattractive to begin with, little stuffed rabbit.
I’d like to think there is a lesson in this. But I’m not sure what it is. So I’ll just say this…
I miss you Bunny Rabbit. Even after all this time, I miss you horribly. And I feel absolutely miserable for ever letting you go like that.
Adventures in Email
A message came across my keyboard while I was writing the entry above. It said…
“gr i love you yes the pin warm upoculip was vere crase!”
Translated it reads, “Grrr…I love you, yes, the pinworm apocalypse was very crazy!”
Which may or may not make sense to you. And it is okay if it does not. The focus is actually on the fact that I had just received my first email from my youngest daughter. First ever. We had to fudge a little to get her an email account, but I honestly do think it is worth it.
I’ll be monitoring the account closely, and have only told her family members and a couple of close friends her email address. My hope is that this will provide the impetus to build her writing, reading and keyboarding skills as well as keep her connected with family better.
Sometimes the rules are worth bending…