Once upon a time, just the other day, there lived a family of five just down the street. Some days Momma stayed home, and some days Daddy stayed home. Every day Ava Anne, Savannah Lynn, and Hunter Thomas stayed home. Nothing extravagant ever seemed to happen. In fact, every day seemed almost the same as the day before. When Ava Anne, Savannah Lynn and Hunter Thomas awoke, they would tip-toe out of their bedrooms, down the hall, and to the kitchen. Momma or Daddy would be there or on the nearby couch, reading or eating or doing something uninteresting like sorting mail.
On this particular day, the family of five who lived just down the street were camping, and it was bedtime. They had their very own camper trailer with beds and a kitchen. Momma and Daddy had tucked Ava Anne, Savannah Lynn and Hunter Thomas in bed, and they were now in their own bed. Soon, however, Hunter Thomas crawled out of his bed and onto Ava Anne’s bed. He was almost in tears as he sat there, holding Ducky.
“Hunter, what’s wrong?” Ava Anne asked. Three year-old Hunter Thomas started to cry as he pulled Ducky away from his chest and looked at him.
“Ducky and I a-wah going sep-a-wet,” Hunter finally said. And with that, he got up, walked to the kitchen area and placed Ducky in a small cupboard.
“What?” Ava Anne asked, very confused. “You’re going separate? What do you mean?”
Hunter Thomas crawled back into bed with his big sissy and cried quietly with his hands held over his face.
“Hunter, let’s get Ducky out of the cupboard. He probably doesn’t like it in there.”
“No,” Hunter Thomas said forcefully. “We a-wah going sep-a-wet.”
“Why?” Ava Anne asked. Hunter Thomas and Ducky had been inseparable for as long as anyone could remember. Now Hunter Thomas was crying more. Ava Anne decided she had better get Momma to deal with this.
Momma got out of her bed and picked up her big boy. She talked to him quietly so Ava Anne could not hear what she and Hunter Thomas were saying. Finally, Momma and Hunter Thomas pulled Ducky out of the little cupboard, and Momma tucked her big boy and his Ducky back into bed.
“What did you say? What did he say?” Ava Anne asked Momma.
Momma looked down at her big girl and sighed.
“He said his friends were making fun of him for carrying a stuffed animal in his shirt,” Momma said.
“They’re so mean!” Ava Anne exclaimed. “Hunter and Ducky are friends. They need to leave him alone. He’s only three.”
“Well,” Momma continued, “Hunter Thomas decided to keep Ducky for now. But you need to stick up for your brother if you ever hear anyone making fun of him. Ok?”
“Ok,” Ava Anne said. “I’m glad Hunter and Ducky are back together. I don’t want Ducky to leave our family.”