It was over a year ago now that he moved in with us. We weren’t expecting to take on a lodger, particularly not one naked from the waist down, slightly jaundiced and with a penchant for honey. But we soon warmed to him and it wasn’t long before he’d semi-permanently nestled his way under my daughter’s arm, and was sleeping in her bed. All, rent free.
It was Halle’s first birthday and Pooh Bear, a gift from my little sister, had been unwrapped and discarded along with all the other presents. But as friends and family exited the celebrations, one by one, Pooh remained. Halle picked him up, tucked him under her arm and, fast forward 17 months, and it’s where he still spends most of his time.
He’s been everywhere with us from shopping trips to theme parks, family and friends’ homes to hotel rooms and Spanish villas, from Christmas fairs to meals out, beach trips to picnics. And he’s travelled by plane, car, taxi, bus, bike and pushchair. And if Halle isn’t carrying him around, her younger brother is having a quick hug before she notices, or Ralphie the dog is using him as a cushion on the sofa. He’s loved by all of us, one of the family. And while our yellow, furry lodger doesn’t pay rent, we’ve had our money’s worth out of him. He’s been puked on, weed on (no poo on Pooh, thankfully), dropped in mud and covered in paint and crayon. He’s spent a fair bit of time going round and round in the washing machine and he’s had a couple of stitches in his leg. I fear his ear has a hole in it and his bum area looks close to splitting. He’s also less yellow now, and more dirty.
Pooh + potty training = confusing
He appears in family photos, he sleeps in Halle’s bed, has breakfast, lunch and tea with us, waits patiently in front of the TV while Halle has her bath, and snuggles into her when she drinks her pre-bed milk. He’s there when she falls and hurts herself, when she’s ill or tired and grumpy. And he was always close by during potty training, which was confusing – does she need a poo or Pooh? Silly name for a bear.
In short, he’s always there. Until…