Up until we saw Star Wars : The Force Awakens, my daughter was deathly afraid of Chewbacca. I’m talking INSANELY afraid of a fictional character in a movie she had yet to see. She had only ever seen Chewbacca in pictures, or at Disneyland, so granted her fears were warranted if not a bit skewed. She begged me not to watch Star Wars, and even had a mini panic attack as we walked up to the movie theater as a family a month ago. She told me to cover her eyes if Chewbacca showed up on screen, and I promised I would. Then, as we settled down in our seats, with our popcorn and snacks, her little hand in a death grip with mine, the movie started.
I was a huge fan of Star Wars as a kid, and often remember spending Sunday afternoons watching it with my dad. I remember the trash compactor scene vividly and fondly. I wanted that experience for my child. I wanted a baby geekling who would nerd out with my on Star Wars and comics and all things awesome. I had no idea what I would be in store for.
When Chewbacca first came on the screen, Abbey’s little hand squeezed mine tight. The Chewbacca did something very “Chewbacca-like”, sassing Han Solo or something and Abbey laughed. Her grip on me lessened, and by the end of the movie she was singing his praises.
“I love Chewy! He’s so cool! He’s so funny and I love his hair!”
Chewy came home with us that day. He lives in Abbey’s room. He follows her around and gets into all sorts of hijinks with her. Chewy is her best friend and he’s completely invisible. She’s never had an imaginary friend, but now she’s got Chewy.
Chewy eats breakfast with us and he loves chocolate milk. He loves sleeping in late, and taking baths. He’s a bit of a rascal and tends to be put on time out for putting stickers all over Abbey. We’re working on that with him.
Before Chewy came along, my daughter wasn’t very imaginative. I would try and pretend and she would call me out on it. But Chewy has changed that in her, and I am so excited that it’s such an iconic character.
Yesterday Abbey and Chewy ate breakfast together. They had cereal and OJ and Nesquik. He’s insistent on that. I don’t mind giving Abbey and Chewy Nesquik because it’s got essential vitamins and minerals she needs, it’s got 45% less sugar than the syrupy kind, and it gets her to drink milk again! (Something we’ve struggled with since removing the sippy cups last year…)
At first Chewy was sort of a silly thing, but he’s really brought out a side in her I haven’t seen until now. She’s got a wildly vivid imagination, and loves to play pretend. She’s been on a mission to watch all the Star Wars films and with that we’ve also added a few more cult classic favorites. Don’t even get her started on Jareth The Goblin King, she thinks she’s in love and wants to marry David Bowie, and I don’t have it in me to break her heart just yet.
I’m just glad that Chewy is here, even if he takes up all the room on the couch and he sheds like crazy.