When I was small, I had a cupboard.
It was one of my favourite spots to play. I reveled in the closed darkness. I remember moving cans of soup out of the way – placing them on the floor or pushing them further under the sink – so that I could squeeze in. I had an Obi Wan Kenobi Star Wars figure that I played with (even then, working on earning my Geek Card.)
I remembered hiding and giggling when I thought that no one could find me.
I liked the way the light came in around the cracks in the doors. I liked the quiet, and the imaginings that were possible in that space.
The blanket box in our living room is the most happenin’ spot in this joint.
It is a storage ottoman we use to hold extra blankets. (We like to get cozy with our entertainment.) The blankets come out of the box and are tossed aside or sometimes, used for forts.
The empty box may be filled with his stuffies.
He plays games on it.
It is a cozy lunch spot.
It was the best seat in the house when we watched the Olympics.
He hangs out and waits for Pokémon.
He settles down with a book on it at the end of the day.
It is his spot. It is his space for imagination and creativity and possibility. Except instead of Obi Wan, he has his Mario buddies.
I hear him playing quietly during the day. He giggles under a mountain of blankets when I pretend that I cannot find him.
These days, the cans of soup stay in the cardboard. Instead, I like to cozy up on the couch in the quiet of the early morning – or more often, the late night hush – with a blanket and my computer. I like the tapping of my fingers on the keys and the rhythm of my thoughts as they flow to the page. This is the place for my dreams and imaginings now, but I remember the feeling that came with that cramped, little cupboard.
I hope Bravo will remember – when his legs get too long and his body too wide – the simple joys that were found in a vinyl covered box and all the imagination and wonder the tiny space provided.
Did you have a special play/hiding spot? Do your children?