Lego’s Villain Mom

 Xiomara Spadafora Punishment Toys
Last Wednesday I bought my son a Lego Optimus Prime Transformer toy as a little appetizer for his upcoming birthday in April. We sat down in the family room and put it together, but as usual, once my son started manipulating it, it fell apart.

Once again I ignored the big sign on the box that says “Age: 6-12” in both, English and Spanish. I could hear my husband saying, “Did you read the box?”

When the little Optimus started crumbling in my son’s hands, he got frustrated and started whining–which these days is his regular tone of voice–so I told him that I would fix it while he went to Taekwondo class with his Daddy.

Secretly, I love Lego and Transformers–they are by far the coolest toys my son’s ever had so far. This is why I buy them for him, so I can play too. I started fixing the Transformer, but no matter what I did, the pieces were too fragile and broke at each attempt to transform the toy from robot to truck and vice-versa.

Desperate, I jumped in my car and went to the store to buy super glue. If you watched The Lego Movie, then you know, now, my secret identity–villain Lord Business who wants to glue the Lego world. Once home, I put the Optimus Prime toy together and glued the pieces that were causing me a nervous breakdown, along  with two finger tips as well.

I know I spoil my son, but I just love seeing my son’s face when he opens a new toy and we play together–even though we always end up fighting because he wants all the toys to blow up into pieces. I also take full responsibility when I buy toys that are not appropriate for his age, but there are several others on the shelves that are misleading and a fraudulent.

Toy makers classify toys in absurd age groups such as “6 to 18 months,” or “1 to 3 years old.” After going through the infant and toddler years–without any “Toys 101 Class”–I know that one month in the life of a baby or one year in the life of a toddler have an abysmal developmental difference in between.

I remember buying toys for my son and storing them away hoping I could re-introduce them a few months later. But, it never happened, and I regret it so much now because I could have put all that money into his college fund or even better, got manicures every week.

For that reason, I believe toy-age groups are deceiving marketing tactics. They sell to moms like me, the illusion of a few minutes of freedom to go to the bathroom alone or have a sip of coffee–cold most of the time–in harmony.

How I wish I could visit any toy company and meet the design and development team. I would love to find out how many of them are parents, and even more, ask them if they love their own parents! A lot of toys seem to be an act of revenge such as cars with excruciating loud sirens, mini-lawn mowers, and other noisy dolls that even make my dogs run for cover.

Nevertheless, I love toys, especially Lego–except when I step on them barefoot!–and I will continue buying them for my son and for me. I’ll just make sure to keep a good supply of super glue around the house.

Thanks for reading and sharing.

Xiomara Spadafora

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