Thursday, March 8, 2012

My favorite things gone bad

When you were a kid, did you have a favorite toy?  Hell yes, you did.  Maybe even now you have a favorite.  In my toy stash, I sure have a fave ;-)  Moving on, my point is that we all have something that at some point we loved more than anything.

What if, let's just suppose, something happened to it.  Let's suppose it was tainted in some way.  Maybe it was hurt just a little and the defect couldn't totally be fixed.  Maybe it was trashed really badly and the stain or smell couldn't be completely removed.

Would it still be your favorite thing in the world?  Would  you still want to snuggle it when you were scared or sick?  Would you still want to carry it when you went to a friend's house?  Speaking in adult language, would you still want it displayed proudly in your foyer so that all of your friends would see it when they visit?

I think we want to believe we would love something just as much if something happened to it.  I think we want to believe we are humble enough that we will be happy to have the thing we love regardless of the shape it's in.

Then, there is the flip side.  Should we want a lovey (what a friend of mine has always called those things of childhood) that is damaged, dirtied, irreparable?  It's not that the damage would rub off on us, but it can't bring us the joy it once did and there is no going back.  Something that damaged can't be repaired.  What is the threshold for "that" damaged?

Whether the lovey is kept or disregarded is really of no consequence because the joy it once gave us is gone forever.  Once that damage has occurred, there isn't a spit shine bright enough; there isn't a seamstress talented enough; there isn't enough money to get it fixed just so that it is like new.  It will never be new again.


  1. Jill's friend from Cincinnati here...beautiful writing.

  2. Thank you so much. Jill's friend must be awesome, especially a flautist!

  3. This reminds me of my daughter's "lovey." She took over a spiderman doll (stuffed) that was my son's when she was about 2 years old. Spiderman went through hell many times but he always was her favorite until she reached the age of being embarassed about having him- we put him away to keep forever as a keepsake and she's replaced Spiderman.

    Me- I have an ugly troll faced fairy thingy that I love. Her base (a mushroom) was broken- disabling her from sitting on the shelf but I learned to work with her disability and stuck her in a plant. She is still seen and enjoyed without noticing her defect.....

    I can't help but to sense that your post may be a shining metaphor for a relationship where trust was broken, in which case you have a choice on how to handle it.

    It is true that no matter what's done with the toy, the happiness it once provided won't any longer ***if you don't let it.

    Before making the choice to throw it away, just put it in the closet for a while and play with other toys. Attempt to find a toy that brings better happiness. You may find better happiness when you stop focusing on the broken toy- though it may take a while.

    You will find yourself either accepting the brokeness of the old toy or having forgotten all about it.

    1. I use metaphors a lot. I also call a rat a rat. Sometimes, I do both. I'm the literary mash up of Glee proportions. The worst is teetering between the two instead of finding a clean line.

  4. well written

    I usually abhor nostalgia. My choldhood was fine. My family was as full of crap as the next but we were cool.

    I was just at the park with my 8 year old daughter. she has the same interests I did at that age...sports, martial arts, playing outside, being dirty, being loud, riding bikes. I realzied how much I love certain toys or things at that age. This post hit home.

    1. Thanks, Lance. Sounds like you have an amazing 8-yr-old. Isn't it interesting how those memories we thought long gone can suddenly appear? I hope these were good ones.

    2. yesterday and today, my 7 & 8 yr old girls were climbing trees and playing with sticks. Maybe the world isn't going to end after all.


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