I don't have a bantal busuk. I didn't have one. In fact, as far as I remember, I am not attached to anything that would make me fall asleep peacefully.
When I was young, because most of my friends have bantal busuk and I didn't want to be left out, I made-believe I had a bantal busuk and routinely slept with it.
Previously, I wrote, you cannot wash babies' bantal busuk. Then when is the most appropriate time to get rid of the 'precious'?
When Niece was old enough to talk and understand, Mother wanted to wash her bantal busuk. Mother asked for her permission first. Niece said, Mother was only allowed to wash the pillow case, not the bantal busuk itself. After much coaxing, she finally gave in and Mother successfully washed the bantal busuk.
Niece handled it quite well. She didn't cry because Mother had explained to her what she was about to do.
Niece's bantal busuk received regular treatment in the washing machine after that.
Niece never played with dolls very much but she treated her bantal busuk like one. By then, she got rid of the pillow case. She played with her bantal busuk, talked to it, pretended to feed it, kissed it...When I took her bantal busuk from her and threw it to the wall, she would run after it and nursed her bantal busuk back to health, by rubbing and hugging it.
That was how precious bantal busuk to Niece.
I found it funny because her parents bought expensive toys, but she reverted to her bantal busuk everytime. It was her source of comfort. She couldn't sleep without it.
Now, at the age of 8, Niece is still attached to her bantal busuk. She only needs her bantal busuk to help her sleep at night. Since she is now all grown up, she doesn't care too much about it except when it is time to go to bed. Because she of this I-care-you-no-longer attitude, she always forget when and where was the last time and place she saw her bantal busuk.
Which means, at 10pm, everybody in the house would frantically search for her bantal busuk which seems to get smaller and smaller (because over the years, the kekabu becomes less and less) which means it is getting harder and harder to search for!
I asked her once, "What is so special about your bantal busuk? What makes it help you to sleep? What do you do with it before you sleep?"
She said, "The smell."
I said, "What smell? I couldn't smell anything!"
She insisted there is a soothing smell coming from the bantal busuk.
But when she is taking the afternoon nap, she could do it without the bantal busuk. Magic!
My cousin also had a son who could not sleep without his bantal busuk.
Once, my cousin brought his family balik kampung and the bantal busuk was accidentally left behind in Johor.
Later that night, his son kept screaming and crying.
He took a flight back to Johor just to retrieve his son's bantal busuk.
Such great lengths parents go to pacify their children...
4 hours ago