Mr. Cheetah: Hero to four-year-olds everywhere.
Way back in February, when the nights were dark and long, Nevin developed a fear of the dark. On the third night of him going to bed upset -- no one has ever accused me of being swift -- it dawned on me: He needed something to comfort him, something special.
While Shawn tried to reason with him, I headed for the basement to find something new. I found something better: something very old. Shawn's mother kept all of his favourite toys from his childhood and a few years ago, passed them on to us. To be banished to the cardboard box the basement for all time, or so we thought.
As urban legend has it (as of February 2013), Mr. Cheetah stayed up all night watching Daddy when he was a little boy. In fact, Mr. Cheetah stayed with Daddy right up until Mommy and Daddy got married, and Mommy said, very sternly to Mr. Cheetah (who talks very softly, if you listen really close), "No more Cheetahs!"
Nevin loved him. Every morning before we went to school, he would tuck him in on the couch, so that he could sleep -- because he was so tired from staying up all night. About a week after Mr. Cheetah entered our lives, Nevin turned to Shawn and said, "we have five people in our family now, Daddy." "Oh?" questioned Shawn. "Yeah: You, me, Scarlett, Mommy and Mr. Cheetah."
It was adorable, sweet and such a four-year-old thing to be. But, as the seasons changed and the evenings brightened, Nevin's need for Mr. Cheetah waned. I thought to myself, "there I go, I missed another thing that I should have written for myself." Then last week, one night I heard Nevin fake-crying in his room. I went up to see what was the matter. "I'm scared... I need Mr. Cheetah."
Phewph. I still have this sweet little moment in time for a little bit longer.