I recently found myself pacing the streets of my neighbourhood one evening, searching desperately for a small brown rabbit that our family has named, Uh Oh (so named because it is dropped on the floor so often).
This is no ordinary rabbit but probably the singularly most valuable item in my entire house.
Cuddling this rabbit is the only way that my two-year-old son will go to sleep at night and without it we are a family at a loss. Not to mention nuisance neighbours with all the crying.
So that night as I hit the streets, my husband paced the floor with my son attempting to rock him to sleep and my two older girls carefully made 'Reward' posters to stick on lampposts. I would have given my life savings I think.
In the end the little blighter was found under a pile of clothes under my daughter's bed, so thankfully a couple of hours later than scheduled all was peace. But the whole sorry incident has got me really worried. There used to be three Uh-Ohs and due to an incident with an over zealous greyhound and an inexplicable holiday loss we are down to the Last One. I've also been careless; making the amateur mistake of letting two of the rabbits live alongside each other for a while and not hiding one in a drawer for emergencies.
In my attempt to get some spares, I have even gone as far as contacting the manufacturer but been told he isn't made anymore. He has been 'retired' apparently. Searches for a 'shushky bunny' on Ebay have yielded nothing. Attempts to introduce other creatures to my son's cot have been met with looks of disgust and shouts of 'finished'.
I'm not sure I ever expected parenthood to throw such random and ridiculous challenges. But we all know if Uh Oh is lost then as far as sleep goes, that's it. Maybe until my son is like 13.
Treasured toys can take on many different guises for children. I've always admired the sensible mums who just give their kids a muslin square and there is a never-ending supply of them.
Sej, a mother of two from London has a slightly different approach.
Her son doesn't go to sleep with a cute little bunny; instead his comforter of choice is a wig. Turns out her two year old wouldn't let go of her hair to go to sleep so she bought a brunette wig which he is now thoroughly attached to. She washes it every day and it now resembles dreadlocks.
But on a recent Facebook post things were not looking good. "The wig has gone missing. I can't cope," she said.
"There was a full search party out, we even checked the freezer," she explains. "Thankfully it turned up in my husband's jeans pocket."
It seems other parents have actual strategies in place to deal with the possibility of loss.
Take Belinda, a mother of three from Banbury. Her eldest became attached to a pink bear from birth. "We bought three and now rotate them in the wash so they all deteriorate at the same time. We never allow two out at the same time so she thinks they are the same one. Slight issue is she is beginning to question why it loses the green stain on the hand sometimes."
Flossie, a mother of two from Norfolk has a more hard line approach. "My little boy only has one little rabbit but I make him leave it in the cot in the day so that way I know it never gets lost."
It's such a sensible approach, I'm kicking myself. Sadly though I think it's too late for me. I took this approach last week and it resulted in my little boy calling for Uh-Oh in every room before refusing to get in the buggy or indeed off the floor without him. What have I created?
P.S. If anyone has a spare large Jellycat Shushky bunny can they let me know!
What are your children's most treasured toys or comforters? How did you wean them - or were you pushed into it when the treasured toys went missing?