Worry stones are little gemstones that have been polished (either by a polisher or by prolonged rubbing in the fingers) and smoothed until they are super soft and touchy-good. They are held and rubbed between the thumb and index finger in order to ward away one's worries. They're an ancient tradition used by gazillions (ok, so I don't know the actual number, but "gazillion" seems to cover it).
Well, my son has something similar to help him lessen his stress: worry nipples. MY worry nipples, to be more clear. The child cannot keep his hands off them. If he is breastfeeding, one hand is on the breast from which he is eating and the other is invariably on the other nipple. It's not just placed there lightly, either. It is in constant motion. I'm telling you, they're worry nips!
He doesn't just use the worry nips when he's eating. Oh, no. If we are at home, my shirt shall be off. If he is in my arms, one little hand is mindlessly rubbing away at the nearest handy worry nip. If we are beside each other on the couch, you can be sure he is consulting a worry nip.
It's not something he focuses his attention on. I am fairly certain he doesn't even know he's doing it half the time. It is habit. It is comfort. It is safety. And while I write about it lightly, I actually believe it is one of the sweetest things he does. I love that I am able to provide those feelings for him. I love that he can come to me for anything - even if it is something as simple as rubbing on the ol' worry nip.