We all have these wonderful memories of our children at Christmas when they’re sitting under the Christmas tree opening their presents. The kids would tear off the beautiful wrapping paper and then they’d pass the boxes on to me to do the rest. I couldn’t get the toys out of the original packaging fast enough! This was no easy task, since I believe that toys are purposely packaged extremely well to make our lives more stressful on Christmas Day. Remember the dolls with their buggies and cool outfits? Or if you have boys, remember the cars and train sets?
What I didn’t know then was that one day the toys would be gone.
As my children got older they simply lost interest in their toys. They sat untouched, collecting dust in the cupboards and on the shelves. My girls sprouted into their teen years and the dolls were forgotten. Instead, their interests changed to CDs, DVDs, mobile phones, gaming consoles, makeup, clothes and …… boys. Now that’s a scary thought, especially when you picture them running around the house in their little princess costumes at the age of four!
I guess as a parent, this must be the first stage in preparation of our children eventually leaving the nest. But what about all those beautiful and expensive toys and dolls sitting on the shelves? Two options. Box them and hide them away in the attic for almost forever or give them to children that would appreciate them NOW. I decided on the latter.
Today, a young family came to pick up the toys. They searched through the boxes with eager looks of anticipation and wonder on their faces. They gave me looks of appreciation and embarrasement. I helped them load all the boxes of toys into their car and then sadly watched as they drove away.
I was glad, of course, that the toys would be cherished but never imagined I would be so sad to see them go. Our babies are no longer babies anymore.
They’re growing up.