Today, I bought a Hot Wheels car while grocery shopping. These cars are almost always 10 for 10. I know this because I have been buying these tiny cars on and off for over ten years. As we were strolling through the aisles, Asher reached for one. He has played with many of the ones we have at home, but those cars aren’t his they belong to his older brothers. In that second, I had an intense flashback to so many memories!
For years matchbox or hot wheel cars were a part of my grocery trip. The $1 car was a treat for all of his older brothers, as long as they behaved themselves in the store. For those of you who may read that and roll your eyes because I bought my boys a $1 car during every grocery trip, rest assured my kids can be idiots, so they didn’t always get them. Also, if I wanted to do it anyway, that’s my right as I am their parent. To each their own.
Today I stood at these miniature cars and looked at them with my last baby strapped into the grocery cart so he wouldn’t climb out. He pulled at a few he could reach and handed a few back to me as I let him “pick” the one he wanted. I remember the time limit I would have to give the twins when picking out their car. I would say, “it doesn’t matter, just pick one,” but they were 3,4,5 years old and to a boy that age, that one car was the most important thing in the world. I can remember finding these little cars in the pockets of jackets when my oldest was an only child. Some people have spare pens on them, I always had a spare hot wheel. That was my life, I remember it well and I smile thinking about it now. Here I am with my last child and starting this whole process over again. I’m fairly certain Asher won’t be asking for a car at every grocery visit for some time still, but when he does he will get the same treat as the boys before him.
I don’t remember the last time Isaiah asked for a matchbox car. Owen and Evan rarely do. They no longer anticipate a car at every trip to the grocery. That hit me like a hurricane. The day will come that I buy Asher his last matchbox. The hot wheel car he carries in his hand today will be replaced by a cell phone, an instrument, a football and (gasp) some young ladies hand. This is the reality that I must face. It’s an equally wonderful and heartbreaking reality.
For today, I’ll love this moment, I’ll listen to Asher’s “vroom-vroom’s” coming from the backseat. I’ll do my best to be patient as he gets older and takes his time choosing the perfect vehicle. Im sure on some days, I’ll help him find the blue one verses the yellow one or the garbage tuck instead of ice cream truck. Other days, Ill tell him he has 30 seconds to choose and he may have to “settle”. I’ll try my hardest to let him always turn my arms, legs, feet and head into a road to drive those cars on, just so I can enjoy the time that he wants to be that close to me.
Few things are as fleeting as childhood. This is a lesson I continue to learn. Today, I was reminded of that lesson in between aisles at the grocery store.
He loved the truck and the packaging it came in.
I think he was pleased with his choice.