Last week I told you about the deeply overpowering relationship I have with my books.I also mentioned I have a blanket addiction. I promised I would tell you about it, so I guess I should keep my word.
Before I get started, you should know this drives my wife crazy. I’m really rather bad about it, I just cannot throw away blankets, and yes, I notice if they are missing. Now I haven’t quite reached the hoarding level when it comes to blankets, I do not hunt in other peoples trash for them, but if a blanket enters my home, you can bet that it is locked in, and I’ve swallowed the key.
I never knew why I was this way. My wife would ask me every so nicely if she could throw this one or that one away, and I was never rude about it. It was always just a “Naw, let’s not get rid of that one yet.” “But honey, It has holes in it!” “Yes, but it’s still useful, just a bit longer.” “Dance, we have been through this whole closet and we haven’t thrown even one blanket away, I think you have a problem.”
I guess I do, where did that come from?
At first, I had no idea where this blanket issue came from. It totally threw me for a loop. I am a generally well adjusted fellow, I don’t have much in the way of emotional hangups. My mother clothed me as a child, I came from a happy loving family, where was this coming from?
Truth is it doesn’t matter what kind of blanket it is. It can be a nice fleece or an itchy, wool army blanket, it makes no difference. I still have my blanket from my parents bed when I was in kindergarten. This is ridiculous. Nobody needs this many blankets, you would think I had a phobia of the central heater failing.
At first, I would just rationalize it. I would claim we might need the extra for the bed, or they were for kids so they could use them in the ever present forts they built in their rooms. I just could not come to grips with the fact that I was simply addicted to blankets for some reason.
Then one day I walked into my daughters room, and I suddenly got it.
They were having a sleepover, and had built the customary required fort, but this time I actually looked inside, and what did I find? They had made a bed of blankets.
As a young man, I was rather poor. I spent much time living out of my Volkswagen bus, and the nights were often cold, so I would stuff extra blankets all around me to keep warm. Whenever I actually had a home, I would not buy a mattress. Instead, I would carefully lay out all the blankets I had, and they would be my padding. I hadn’t thought about it in years, but I used to collect blankets every chance I got.
They were quite literally, my security blankets.
They made me feel safe, adaptable. I knew as long as I had my blankets, I could go anywhere, and live through any situation. If the bus broke down in the middle of nowhere, I would not freeze, even if it was 20 below. They were safety, and I carried that idea right into my adult life. Lots of blankets to me means I am safe, that I can handle any storms that may come.
Now for most people, knowing the truth would set them free from the need, but I suddenly realized that they still make me feel safe. If the power goes out this winter, we will be warm, and I will feel safe.
For my wife’s sanity however, I did get rid of the ones with holes in them. And I’m okay with that.