I Steal My Daughter's Toys
It's like a nightmare every time I walk in there. My heart starts beating a little faster. I can feel the anxiety creeping in. Unbeknownst to me, my hands are clenched in fists. Fight or flight has taken over my body. It's time. It can't be ignored any longer. I have to clean my 5-year-old daughter's room. Damn it all to hell!
If you have children, especially around the age of five, you know my pain. I would give you a hug but the internet has yet to find a way to let me do that. Just know that I am mind-hugging you so hard right now. It's like a huge bear hug that just won't quit, probably to the point of awkwardness.
I don't understand how it happens. Why are there stuffed animals EVERYWHERE? Why are there seashells hiding in the fluffy carpet, all jagged and gnarly, just waiting for my delicate foot to make contact with them? And for the love of all things good and pure in this world, why are there tiny Legos all over the place? I threw those things out the last time I cleaned this room. But they keep coming back. Somehow those little demons from hell crawl their way out of the garbage and lay in wait on the floor.
I can't take the messes. I can't take the itty bitty pieces of toys that my 15-month-old always picks up and puts in her mouth. She is drawn to them; If they are in the room, she will find them. So I do what most moms do: I start stealing the teeny toys and throwing them away. Tiny Barbie hangers? Gone. Legos? Oh you bet your ass I take those. Tiny pieces of papers that seemingly serve no purpose whatsoever? To the garbage you go!
I don't let my child watch me do this. I do it while she is "helping me clean", aka doing anything she possibly can to make herself look busy. I tried asking her in the past if it was okay to get rid of some toys. I told her we could donate them to Goodwill or her old daycare center. Sometimes she is on board, sometimes not. So now when it comes to all the pieces of toys that lay about, I don't ask. I take. Because if I didn't she would hoard them for a lifetime. And I would step on them in the dead of night, or when I'm rushing around in the morning trying to get her ready for school. And her sister would try to eat them. And they would just keep accumulating until we lived in a house with nothing but Barbie shoes and pieces of stickers from past doctor's visits.
You may call me a thief. I call myself clever. Apples and oranges :)