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May 17, 2007 / Maleesha Kovnesky

Cougar

We had a Teddy Emergency this evening.

Teddy was left behind.

I have vivid memories of relying solely on “Cougar” during my early youth.  Cougar, a brown stuffed kitty cat, had been my best friend since before I can remember anything.  However, I do remember the terror of losing Cougar. 

Cougar, the early years

Artist rendition of Cougar, newly loved

There were many close calls; times where the A&W lady would chase our car through the parking lot shouting “You forgot this!”  The tires would screech and my mom would thank the lady (it was always a lady) for saving Cougar.  Cougar left at my cousin’s house.  Cougar accidentally under the couch.  Cougar on long vacations to Wisconsin, nearly left at Grandma’s and mistaken for a dishrag.  My mother was vigilant about making sure Cougar was safe and remembered.   

Parents know that if anything ever happens to the Comfort Object, darkness and torment await.

I used to slowly pull the threads that made up Cougar’s fur out, bit by bit.  I chewed on Cougar’s nose.  Cougar’s tail was also fun to use as a handle.  One day, much to my dismay, Cougar’s head came off.

My mother attempted resuscitation, but Cougar’s body was unsalvageable.  The tail was still intact (mostly) so she sewed it directly to Cougar’s head.  She also noticed that Cougar’s eyes, nose and mouth were long gone (probably picked away) and took it upon herself to recreate these vital items with thread.   

Cougar.  Barely. 

Artist rendition of Cougar, later in life

One day, I can’t remember exactly when (only the feeling) Cougar disappeared.  It is a mystery, the fate of Cougar.  My dad always insisted that my mom hid Cougar in order to surprise me with him when I became an adult.  I know this can’t be true, my mom would never suppress Cougar.  Cougar just was no more.  I always wondered what could have happened to Cougar.  The possibilities were horrifying!  I might have blocked them out.  Someday, when I end up on a therapist’s couch, Cougar will end up being discussed in great detail and perhaps I will remember what I did.  Did I leave him in the neighbors yard?  Goodness no!  The neighbors yard was so overgrown that cars and dinosaur bones could have been in there.  Did I leave Cougar at the A&W again?  Tragically, I will never know.     

This may be why I have three identical teddy bears for my son.  Teddy, Teddy, and Teddy.  The Teddy triplets are rotated, washed, and stored carefully out of direct sunlight.  I understand the fear of losing Teddy.  This may be a bit extreme, and part of the reason Iraq hates us, but I am scarred from experience and am determined to keep Teddy around until AJ grows out of his Comfort Object naturally. 

We also avoid A&W like the plague.

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2 Comments

Leave a Comment
  1. pikespeakdenise / May 24 2007 8:55 pm

    Wow. Now this is a blog. The Iraq connection alone is genius.

    So did the lost Teddy reappear? And, does AJ know there are 3?

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