Sunday, March 6, 2011
In which I get my four-year-old heart broken
I have some grave news about pacifiers. They're not for 37-year-olds.
I remember the day I stopped using one very well. It was my fourth birthday, and my father was tucking me in, and we agreed that I was a big girl now, too big for pacifiers. He turned off the light and I curled up to sleep, feeling both proud and completely lost.
My dad must have been so relieved, he'd been trying to get me to quit for quite some time. Once he took me up on deck of the boat back to Trondheim from the windswept little peninsula where he worked as a teacher. He wanted me to throw the pacifier in the water, so I would know that it was really, truly gone. Eager to please my dad, I plucked it out of my mouth and let it go over the rail. I watched with mounting horror as my pacifier, my love, was swallowed by the churning wake, so thoroughly that it didn't even re-surface before the wake was lost in darkness. Of course I wailed all the way to Trondheim, a good ninety minutes, and our first stop when we reached the city was a pharmacist's.
And now, having watched the stars in Magnus's eyes whenever his darling 'mem' is brought out, I was convinced that I remembered correctly: Nothing in the whole world could be more comforting and soothing.
So I tried it. It was dry, rubbery, awkward and not a little bit exhausting.
Which is not to say that the hole in my four-year-old heart is mended. Not at all. On the contrary, even. I guess some memories are best left alone.
UPDATE: Magnus would like to point out that mothers are clueless.