Positive message of the Lego movie be damned: I’m about to break out the superglue.
Yesterday we had some friends round, and they brought the kids some Lego sets. One was a Star Wars little spaceship, and M about exploded with joy. He’s so proud of this little ship that his friend helped him build; he even hung the plastic bag it came in on his bedroom wall. He’s not let go of it. (Don’t leggo your Lego! I know, it’s gross, but I had to say it. Otherwise I’d keep hearing it repeat in my brain all day.)
Imagine my joy to wake up this morning to a slightly desperate wife saying, ‘He lost a little bit of Lego off that ship. His heart is breaking.’
It transpires that while he was manically running around downstairs last night, this piece mysteriously vanished into thin air. I tried to build myself up for the inevitable horror and suffering a missing toy can sometimes bring.
And so it began: my helpless trudge around the lounge, flicking my eyes from side to side methodically. Asking random questions like, ‘Where did you do most of your running? Over here, or there?’ And then I asked the most awful question of all: ‘Can you just please look under the play kitchen? You’re smaller, so it’s probably easier for you to look underneath things.’
And the crying began. I remembered back to when he started collecting the less-than-an-inch-high Angry Birds Star Wars guys. Back when he only had one or two and they were THE MOST PRECIOUS THINGS in the universe. Because he had so few, because he wanted to play with them all the time, because he carried them around….and because as soon as something leaves his hands, his brain wipes clean any memory of where it might be….it was a bad few weeks for me.
I became more and more angry about these little figures, anger based in the panic that he was losing something he loved so much. And frustration that, inevitably, I was the one left dealing with the fallout: his heart wrenching sobs, hours of mutual hunting for tiny Luke Skywalkers, and the long wait before we found any of them.
My initial feeling was a surge of that exhausted panic today. And wondering if my wife had managed to figure out how to unsuperglue the superglue lid that had stuck to the tip of the applicator.
Creativity be damned, flexibility be damned, GET THE SUPERGLUE. Make that sucker stick together so well it’s impossible to remember it was Lego in the first place! Make it last forever!
But he surprised me. Yes, he cried when I asked him to look under the play kitchen. I didn’t know how to respond to what I thought was his despair at having to hunt for his missing piece of awesome (though I certainly felt that despair myself!). So I asked. I had to.
‘Why are you crying? What is going on?’
I didn’t expect what I heard.
‘All my guys are looking. I’m getting everyone ready.’ His tears stopped as he earnestly showed me the lines of Lego (homemade) spaceships, Angry Birds figures, and the like. His voice lilted with hope and excitement. He said, ‘Look! Even the Cars and planes are going to help. And these Playmobil guys. Everyone is looking.’
He didn’t want to take time out from organizing a giant rescue mission for the rather paltry option of him looking under something on his own.
I nodded. He ran around the lounge, two Lego helicopters in his hands, speaking in deep tones of men’s voices over the radio. Talking back and forth, conducting the search, calling me ‘search master’ and having new toy ensigns come to me to report for duty.
He commanded an army of plastic friends ready and willing to help him. His positivity made me wonder what happened to the kid who would cry for ages until a missing thing was found.
I’m still waiting for the lego/angry bird mutants to rise.
Pro tip: If you pop off a Lego mini figure’s head, the little peg that remains is the perfect size to fit in an Angry Bird’s bum. Voila! Mutants that are oddly appealing.
We still haven’t found the piece. The little spaceship has been delicately perched higher up where we can’t step on it. I think he’s a little afraid to play with it until the tiny maroon thing has been reattached to one of the wings.
But hopefully one of the millions of Yoda birds and pig nosed Stormtroopers will find it soon.
postscript: (Is it really a postscript if I haven’t actually posted this at the time?)
YES YES YES YES YEEEEEESSSSSSSSS. As I was uploading the picture to this post, I heard a scream of joy. I looked over and, sure enough, as he was playing with Lego spaceships and Angry Birds, the missing piece just popped back into existence. I’m so happy he got to be the hero, I’m so happy I didn’t explode in exasperation this morning, I’m so happy we held the faith it would be found.
Now, back to the superglue debate…Ha.