Playing in Traffic

One of the wonderful things about having children is being able to relive your childhood through them. Just recently, I saw the cutest card table playhouse on etsy.com. I got really excited about the possibility of getting one large enough to fit my dining room table so that there would be room inside for me as well as the children. If you happen to be a child of the 80’s, you can relate to my thoughts on how badly toys sucked back then. The good quality wooden toys were no longer in fashion. Sure we had Barbie dolls, which came equipped with a leotard, hoola hoop, and a pair of pink leg warmers. Modern day Barbie has a better wardrobe than I do! And I love being able to indulge in it.

My daughter’s current fascination is with Polly Pocket. I guess it’s kind of cute, but I can’t quite understand her obsession over them. The other day, we were in the car at a stop light when I noticed the doll sitting on the passenger seat. My car doubles as a toy box, so this is a pretty normal finding. I picked it up and stood her up next to the window, which happened to be open. Without warning, Polly’s head fell off. Out the window it went. I watched helplessly as the head landed face-up on the ground, her eternally opened eyes staring back at me accusingly. My daughter, who was sitting in the second row, let out a blood-curdling scream. Just as I was about to open the door to retrieve the fallen head, the traffic light turned green. My heart sank into my stomach when I looked in the rearview mirror and saw Thing One sobbing uncontrollably, her face streaked with tears. “That was my favorite toy! Now somebody is going to run her head over and kill her!” I am pretty sure Polly had already died when I accidentally decapitated her, but I kept that little tidbit to myself.

I tucked Polly’s headless body into my purse because leaving her in plain view would have been cruel. After promising to buy a new Polly (in addition to Polly’s best friend, so Polly wouldn’t be lonely anymore), Thing One stopped hyperventilating. “But why can’t you just go back and get her head?” she asked. “You can save your money if you just get her head and put it back on.” A child after my own heart. I like the fact that she is already thinking with a frugal mind.

After I dropped the children off at my mother in law’s house, I headed back to work to finish out my day. It wasn’t a very productive afternoon because I couldn’t get stop thinking about Polly. I had committed involuntary manslaughter as far as my daughter was concerned, and she wasn’t going to let me live that down.

The next day, I was driving that same route. Out of curiosity, I checked the ground while I sat at the very traffic light that had been the scene of the horrific crime. Low and behold, Polly’s head was laying just outside of the turning lane. I had to get that head. I needed to redeem myself in Thing One’s eyes. But of course, the light turned green before I could open the door to grab it. I wasn’t about to give up, though. It was a miracle that the head survived 24 hours in heavy traffic. Polly’s head and body were destined to be reunited.

Today,  I drove by the very same spot. I searched the ground without hope, assuming that Polly’s head had either been claimed by street sweepers or some random little girl whose dolly was also missing a head. I almost missed it, but there it was. Face down on the white line was the ponytail that had etched itself into my memory with perfect clarity. I had to grab it! But….the light turned green.

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4 thoughts on “Playing in Traffic

  1. If Thing One needs an attorney I know several who’ll work her case pro-bono. Dude. Poor Polly’s head lying in the streets for days and nights… for shame:)

    I can remember when I accidentally washed one of my daughter’s favorite doll in the washer. She was so hysterical I thought she was going to call 911 and have me reported!

    Hugs and Mocha,
    Stesha

    {I subscribe to your feed. Your posts aren’t inboxed to my email. It could be a glitch or delay.}

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