5.02.2010

A Short Walk Down Sesame Street...

25 years ago my grandmother gave me two gifts (well, she gave me more than two, but only two are being discussed in this story...). She gave me a stuffed Big Bird and a stuffed Cookie Monster. They both had on diapers that had the (then) Luvs diaper logo on them (only Cookie Monster still has his on now). Very quickly, I favored Big Bird. Ingeniously, as my grandmother always was, she went out quickly and purchased a second Big Bird so that there would be a back-up, and he was lovingly named "Bird's Cousin". Bird went with me everywhere. He was always with me, on every trip, every adventure, every place I went to, he was there. Only when Bird was forgotten somewhere did Bird's Cousin fly in for a visit.

As I'm sure you've guessed, yes, I still have Big Bird today. And he looks sad, sickly even. But he's Big Bird. The companion who has always been there for me, who has always consoled me when I needed it, and who has helped me cope with numerous nightmares. I know it sounds silly, but when you're a kid, these things matter. Nevertheless, his seams are getting a little ragged and he needs to have some surgery done. My (other) grandmother was always his surgeon, able and agile with the needle, she purchased thread in every color of yellow and orange so as to keep up with his perpetual color changes over the years. She was the only surgeon he was allowed to go to, but when she died, I needed someone to replace her. My aunt willingly took over.


This brings me to the reason for this post: I have to surrender Big Bird for a few days so that he can have his surgery performed, so his Cousin had to come in for a visit. When I put them side by side, I was amazed at the difference between them. It is astonishing to me how different these two stuffed animals, who used to be identical, look today. (I'm sure you can guess which is which, below...)


This got me thinking about how material things can bring us comfort in life. I can guarantee you this: if ever anyone were to do anything to Bird, I would lose it. But, that same philosophy goes for anyone doing anything to a person I care about. Bird is simply a material object that brings me comfort, like blankies and other sorts of animals for other people. It reminds me of times when I couldn't fathom danger. It reminds me of times when I felt safe all the time, because if I didn't - all I had to do was go see my mom, dad, brother or sister, and I felt instantly safe again. Bird is simply an object representing feelings.


This drastic difference in Bird also reminds me of how we can change over the years. As we have life experiences, we change - inside and out, but if we life inside a box for 23 years, we won't change a bit (or at least not very much). The choices we make in life help to build our spirits and create who we are; we are changed by the choices and experiences we have in life. I try to make choices that will be beneficial for not only myself, but the people who are surrounding me in my life. Everything I do, every choice I make, and every experience I have will not only affect me, but everyone else around me, too.
It's just a simple reminder that we need to be cognisant of the things around us so that we are making positive impacts on people in our lives and not negative impacts. I love everyone in my life and am so thankful that I have them around.

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