Last year, Ian left his beloved Wolfie at the cabin. We didn't realize it until we'd been back home for several days. Suddenly, he came to us crying his little head off. "Wolfie got left! We have to go get him. Poor Wolfie!"
Uh, no. We didn't drive 900 miles back to the cabin to get him. But, our neighbor went up a month or so later, and didn't find Wolfie. I was convinced that Ian had left him in a restaurant along the way, or that he'd fallen out of the car at one of our stops. I knew he wasn't in the cabin, 'cause Mecca reorganized the whole place and didn't see him.
From time to time throughout the year, Ian would ask us, "Do you think Wolfie is lonely? Do you think he's cold? Do Wolfies get scared? Do you think he found his family?"
We figured out (when he finally TOLD us), that Ian had left Wolfie on purpose, because, you see, Wolfie missed his wolf family and wanted to stay in the mountains to find them. Okay then. The kid has a brilliant imagination. But then Ian realized how far away we'd be, and how long it would be before we made it back to the cabin, and he was devesated. He missed that silly stuffed animal. MOURNED for it.
"Are we going to Colorado?" he asked again and again. We dared NOT return this year. Ian would've never forgiven us. I still was convinced that Wolfie was NOT at the cabin, and I invested some heart and soul into preparing Ian for that eventuality.
He didn't mention Wolfie all the way to Colorado. I thought he'd accepted that the toy was gone. I would be wrong.
While Darren, Dani and I unloaded the car, Aidan and Ian bounded upstairs. Silly me, I thought they were just exploring. But they were on a mission. Within seconds, we heard the whoops and squeals of delight. WOLFIE!!! He was THERE!!! Hidden in a cupboard. Safe and sound. Not sad, not cold, not scared.
I've never seen my Ian more joyful. Wolfie is now safe and sound at home. I wonder if he's missing the mountains?