I’ve been collecting objects for my student slicers. Found objects. Things can trigger story ideas. I started this last week, and the kids loved it. They go to the box. Take an item. Set it on their desk and write. They’ve even added a few of their pieces to the collection.
This week, I wanted to add new treasures, so I went looking for a few small toys.
We had plenty. I stored them in plastic boxes kept under a wooden bunk bed.
When our sons moved out, the bunk bed was dismantled, and our daughter moved into the larger space. It made sense. Still, I remember feeling the finality of it. The room was no longer a boy’s space.
But what happened to those toys?
The Lego pieces, the Batman with the plastic cape that detached, Robin. They would be perfect for my writing box. Those toy-filled bins. Did we store them?
I looked in the garage and found things. Things that were essential at the moment but now are too big or too outdated to use, and too personal to give away.
My middle child’s wiggly skateboard. The elder son’s turntable.
A box of medals, school papers, pictures, albums stacked in the corner.
DVDs, an old softball, a single crutch from an emergency room visit.
No dinosaurs, Legos, or superheroes. Did I give them to someone? Did I throw them away?
Writing this forced the memory I had forgotten.
The airforce officer at Starbucks. He had two young sons. They reminded me of my boys. I had the toys in the garage. I saw these boys they were the perfect age for the toys. I asked if they were interested and went home to get the boxes.
“Are you sure you want to do this?” the father asked.
Of course. I told him I was glad the toys would have a good home.
I don’t regret it. But, I’m surprised I didn’t save a few superheroes, a T-rex or a Hot Wheels car.
Considering what’s left in the dusty, disorganized garage. The remnants of three kids’ busyness. Their passions, accidents, awards, treasures, school life. These disparate things connect.
I’m glad to have these pieces, but still looking for Batman.
Thank you, Two Writing Teachers for the March Slice of Life Challenge. Writing helps me find memories and understandings. Find more slices here.