When Anna was born and we brought her home, she slept between us every night. At that time I was wearing my Patagonia capilene long-underwear as pajamas, specifically because they were extremely soft and I knew they’d be nice against her skin.
When it was time for her to move into her own room, into her crib, the best advice I got out of the 864 books I’d read on the subject suggested giving her a “transition” object, something that would help her feel safe and secure. I thought, what better than the very shirt she’d been snuggling up against for the first I’m-not-going-to-say-how-many-months of her life. So I sacrificed my long-underwear top: I cut off the long sleeves to protect her from getting them wrapped around her neck, and Anna became totally attached to what became known as “Snuggy”. She slept with Snuggy, she snuggled Snuggy, she WORE Snuggy (she LOVED that she could put the entire thing around her body). When we had some family photos taken on the beach for Christmas cards, Snuggy was there in the pictures because she refused to put Snuggy down. Snuggy went everywhere with us, from the library and the grocery store to every trip we made into Portland for supplies. Snuggy traveled by car and airplane on several trips to Boise, and to Spokane when she stayed with her Nana for a week at a time (twice) when Eric and I went to Alaska and then Hawaii. Then, when we took our big trip in the fall of 2003, Snuggy flew across the country with us to New York. Snuggy went to Central Park, the National History Museum, restaurants, galleries, stores…on subways and ferries and carousels, zoos….upstate NY, Vermont, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Main….you get the idea. Somehow we managed to cover thousands of miles and and did not lose her. It was easy because Anna simply never let go of Snuggy. Snuggy was very well traveled and extremely well-loved.
Until… the darkest day ever. We’d moved to Spokane and were just having a regular Sunday when we heard an announcement on the local public radio that one of our favorite blue-grass bands was having an impromptu “concert” on the roof-top garden of a photography studio downtown. We decided to grab some lunch first and then we went to the show. By the time it was over, it was getting dark and Anna was tired and then...she realized that SNUGGY. WAS. GONE. We backtracked and looked and looked and made phone calls to the restaurant and the photographer and looked and looked and I took time off work the next day to go scour the parking lot where we’d gotten into and out of the car and we called the restaurant AGAIN. But it was no use: Snuggy was lost. I’m sure that we’d left her on the seat of the restaurant booth and someone, thinking she was just a piece of fabric, threw her away.
That was five years ago, and to this day, if Anna is very tired, she will cry and say how much she misses “big Snuggy.” I had, for some reason, saved the sleeves I’d cut off and tucked them in a drawer. So Anna still has two bits of Snuggy fabric to snuggle, but it’s not the same. Just the other night as she settled into bed, she said “What if” with big tears streaming down her cheeks, “someone found Snuggy and is using her as a RAG?!” OOOOOHHHHhhhhh rip my heart out and tap-dance on it. She is so afraid of losing the two remaining bits of Snuggy that she wants to have her dad make a “special box”.
I’m going somewhere with this, I swear.
Where I’m going, is that I have become obsessed, OBSESSED with finding that fabric. Be it another article of Patagonia’s “base-layer” clothing, or in plain fabric form, I would practically KILL for a good-sized piece of that mid-weight capilene fabric in Periwinkle blue. I want to make her a blanket using that (or VERY similar fabric), so that she could have her Snuggy back. Not because she needs Snuggy anymore; she is, after all, 8. But for sentimental reasons. So that she knows that I know how very important Snuggy was (and is) to her.
Of course, Patagonia only made that exact color one year (roughly 1995). I’m not even entirely sure what the fabric is; it’s mostly polyester, I think, but has the “hand” of a light-weight cotton or jersey. It’s not "slick" like polyester. I have, of course, checked the Patagonia website and all the usual outdoor retailers. I have checked E-bay to see if someone is selling their old long-underwear. I have even thought about writing to Patagonia and seeing if they just happen to have some of that fabric lying around a warehouse somewhere. Am I crazy??
But can you imagine her delight in opening a present Christmas morning and finding a Snuggy blanket?? It’s worth it to be crazy. If any of you have any ideas to help me find that fabric, I would be forever in your debt.