When I was first born, I received a gift. It was from my mom’s student’s grandma. Someone totally irrelevant to me, but her gift impacted my life. Her gift remains with me forever, even if it was packed away when I was five years old. A seemingly simple present given to me at birth has had a huge effect on me as a person.
I was gifted a small blanket. It was soft and pink, and the yarn was brand new. From the moment I received it, the blanket was a part of me. Looking back, the blanket was average. It was small and basic, but it was still special. It shouldn’t have been so impactful, but it was. That blanket was my support system. At a young age, that blanket made me feel safe.
When I was two years old, I needed to get stitches on my face, right under my left eye. I don’t remember anything about that day, the car ride to the hospital, the probable needle in my face, the slow tears from my mom. All I remember is the blanket I was clutching the whole time. I held on to it throughout the car ride, while they were injecting the needle, while the doctor was sewing together my skin. Another thing I remember is that through the whole trip, I didn’t cry once. Because I had my blanket.
When I was in Kindergarten, my house was robbed. Nobody was hurt and nothing was broken, only my mothers jewelry was stolen. But still I remember, I was terrified. My parents were distracted, talking to the police and sorting out finances, and I was left alone. Their neglection is justified, but in that frightening time, there was only one thing that would help ease my nerves. My blanket.
When I was five, I broke my wrist. I was playing soccer with my brother and he kicked it hard at me, and I didn’t move my wrist in time. It wasn’t done on purpose or in spite, but I was so angry at him which lead to a hissy fit. At that point, I wasn’t carrying around my blanket like I had for the past four years of my life, but this was a time where I needed familiarity, so I got it back. I calmed down and recovered quickly from this injury, because I had my blanket.
My blanket was my first friend. My blanket was the first real possession I loved unconditionally. My blanket stayed with me through my life. But, like anything else, my blanket expired as it aged. It became less and less soft. The bubblegum pink faded to a blushed grey. The intricate knitting became tattered and broken.
Physically, my blanket is no longer with me. But the memories of its assistance will always live on for me. This blanket was there for me when no one else was, and in my early youth it remained a constant. Whatever changed in my life, my blanket was always there, day or night.
Now, it's spread out. The biggest piece of my blanket left over is packed away in a box labelled “childhood”. Small pieces that had fallen out throughout the blankets life are packed into a globe-like plastic container. A lot of it is in the trash or on the ground somewhere.
I didn’t lose this blanket all at once. It’s loss wasn’t sudden, or heartbreakingly painful. My loss was gradual. As I aged, so did the blanket, we just had different life spans. I will always be grateful to have had this blanket. It taught me about responsibility, patience, and love. Looking back on the “death” of it, I don’t feel sad that it’s gone. I feel lucky that I got to spend the time with it that I did, and thankful that I had a companion like it to grow up with.