When Grace was little - oh, between the ages of two and five - she used to ride on this pink and teal Big Wheel-type plastic tricycle. I don't remember where I got it, but it was used. Thrift store? Garage sale? Dunno.
This little vehicle had only one plastic handlebar. The little tassels on the end had looooong since been yanked off by the previous owner, as had the other handlebar.
I was so impressed with Grace, though - she cycled that thing around like a pro, even with only one handlebar! I couldn't believe how she swirled around and turned the corners, speedily and deftly making each movement.
Pretty impressive for a toddler. At least, to her adoring mom. :-)
Fast forward to ages seven or eight or nine or 10...or now, to 11...
Mom's in clean-up mode. I called the garbage company and scheduled one of those twice-yearly extra garbage pick-ups. Time to gather all of the junk that has accumulated and put it in front of the house for the big, strong men to toss into the back of their big, strong crunching machines.
(Yes, I recycled whatever I could, but some stuff ya just can't...)
I asked Grace and Faith if I could discard the old, busted-up wagon and they said yes. I asked if I could throw out the old, rusted-out bicycles and they said yes. I asked if I could throw out the old, cracked-plastic Big Wheel-type thing and they said yes.
(After all, it had been sitting in that busted-up wagon, summer after summer and winter after winter, for many years...)
Yesterday at work, I started to think about that Big Wheel-type thing...and how darling my little Grace looked as she ran it around the front of the house. I was thinking of the videos that were somewhere in some cabinet, which would evidence her ability to maneuver that thing.
And I made a decision.
I was keeping that one-armed treasure. I just couldn't part with it.
I don't know what I planned to do with it, but I couldn't let it go. I just couldn't. Maybe it was that mom in me (oh, geez, getting weepy again...), who doesn't want to see my girls grow up.
I wanted to cling to that piece of plastic like it was my daughters themselves.
And so, with 12 hours to spare, I went home last night and decided to take that Big Wheel-type thing out of the busted-up wagon and save it, somewhere...anywhere...
I lifted up the rolled piece of old carpet that was over it, and I lifted up the pink-and-teal plastic piece of my heart's memory, and as I grasped that one, single handlebar...it snapped off!
I just stood there, looking at the crumbled piece of ragged plastic at the end of the arm there...and realized that I just had to let it go. It made no sense to keep it.
So this morning, I watched as the big, strong garbage men picked up the old, busted-up wagon........ And the old, rusted-out bicycles........ And then........ they picked up the old, cracked-plastic Big Wheel-type thing that had NO handlebars...
And I almost ran out and cried at them to not put it into their big, crunching machine...!
But I didn't...