It’s been a couple years but I still remember the worried look on Big Robots face as he asked me, “Where are your toys mummy?”
“What do you play with? You have no toys” he continued.
I tried to explain that grown ups don’t really play with toys and that, as you get older, you tend to be interested in other things. Lego and Playmobil lose their appeal unless you’re a collector.
He continued to look worried “so what will happen to all my toys?” He couldn’t imagine ever not wanting to play. He couldn’t imagine not owning mountains of plastic bricks, fire engines with flashy lights and enough toy bin trucks to put the councils fleet to shame. He couldn’t believe that, one day, he might not want his favourite toys any more. His eyes widened, big brown eyes staring at me and sadly contemplating this. Then I felt sad too.
Where ARE my toys? In landfill I think, my parents didn’t keep a single one. I felt sad that I couldn’t see them again and pass some of them on to my boys. I remember when I was a child, my dad would sometimes bring his old toys out of the attic. He still had his, I felt sad that I didn’t have a single one of mine. I ended up browsing eBay for Polly Pockets, Keypers, Rainbow Brite and all the rest. Just to look at the pictures and remind myself of them but then my fingers got twitchy and I bought a Polly Pocket wedding play set, one like I used to own, but it doesn’t feel right, it’s not my one.
So I had to accept that, as much as I’d like to see them again, just one last time, all my favourite toys are gone. I don’t want to let the same happen to my boys toys. Obviously I can’t keep everything but some plastic superheroes and flashy-lighted emergency vehicles will make their way into the loft once the boys think they’re finished with them. Since I know they won’t be, they’ll want to see them again, at least one last time.
What were your favourite toys when you were growing up? Do you still have them? Will you keep some of your children’s toys?