My motto for this year’s A to Z is “Animals in my life – stuffed or alive”.
Amy was one of my first toys. She was by my side for about fifteen years, and I literally loved her to pieces. I was devastated when she got lost during a hospital stay in my teenage years.
I don’t remember who gave her to me or at which point she joined my life, but the picture above was taken when was two years old. So we met very early, I would say.
During the following years, she became my confidante. She made me feel safe at night, I could tell her everything. When I went through the exhausting process of learning how to live with hearing impairment, she was there. When I struggled through school, she comforted me. When my mental health issues became obvious, she reminded me that I had overcome problems in the past and would be better again.
She was renamed a few times, the last time when I was about six years old. Jimmy Carter, who just had become President of the USA, was all over the news. My father and I read a paper together, and I learned Jimmy Carter had a daughter named Amy. I immediately fell in love with this name, and my favourite stuffed toy was known as Amy from this day on.
There are organisations here in Germany that give stuffed animals to children having a hard time – illness, or the divorce of their parents. Remembering Amy, I think this is a very good idea.