Yep…I stole that line from an 80’s toy-line/animated series/global phenomenon. But, hopefully, recognizing that it’s stolen will absolve me from potential lawsuits.
Transformers are an innovative answer to a child whose brain requires more than just an action figure. It can transform from a vehicle, animal, or tool into a robot master!! Now that I’ve “geeked” enough—here’s the reason I’m bringing it up: my kid wants me to make him a Transformer costume. He doesn’t want just any transformer…he desires to be the biggest one, Optimus Prime.
I can’t do it, baby.
There’s just no way!
Mommy doesn’t have enough time—FINE OKAY, I’LL DO IT!!!!
The sad thing is, he isn’t arguing with me to make “Prime,” the latter is a conversation I’m having with myself. And the inner monologue resolves itself with: Rachelle, you love making these things for your kids.” <sigh> “You’re right, you know me well…cuz, I’m, well—you.
So, I get started. What better weekend to start and finish a gigantic-sized-robot-problem-costume then a weekend four weeks out from the needed date? I will get it done in two days and be able to get back to other routine things. If I need to make adjustments—I’m FOUR weeks out! That’s PLENTY of time for tweaking to get this thing done and dusted!
LOLOLOLOL (…this is me laughing at me)…LOLOLOL
I started construction on October 7th and finished 20 days later–the night he needed to wear “Prime.”
It was NOT two days. It was TWENTY!!! My fingers ached from box-cutting and burned from hot glue mishaps, but it when I had finally finished, the aches and burns diminished in the light of success!!
Caleb is 13 and next year he may not want to dress-up. This is his final year in middle school…will high school rob him of his whimsy? These are reasons why I said “yes” to Optimus Prime.
He wore his costume with pride at his orchestra costume party. His friends surrounded his 6 foot-plus figure (from the stilts inside the costume that grew him 6 inches) and praised his transformation. He had an epic moment where he won the costume contest and selfies were taken with him. The school published his costume photo on social media! He was feeling great and so was I: “Hooray, Rachelle, after nearly 200 hours of labor and birthing a robot, it was WORTH it for this moment and all the ones to follow for the trunk or treats ahead!!!
And then Caleb got the flu.
200 hours of work for one hour of fun.
He didn’t wear it after the party. No trunk or treats. No taking pictures with friends while slamming Sweet-tarts and snagging Snickers. He was straight up sick. Poor baby.
Was the trade off, 200:1 hours, worth it?
My husband saw my slumped shoulders and smug expression. He knew that Caleb wasn’t the only one disappointed. I had expectations. I had plans. My husband was so wise to hold me first and then encourage me with truth, “Our son will look back on this one amazing day—where his friends cheered him on—and appreciate what you’ve done. He will hold it as cherished memory. That is how we need to remember it as well.”
Had I so built up my dreams–much like building Prime’s massive shoulders–that I had held too tightly to the dream and missed its purpose? The purpose is that I celebrate my son and my motherhood. The purpose is that God has given me an ability and I chose to bless someone else with it. Outcome must be released and Jesus must always be my focus for me to hold all else “loosely.”
I will learn and re-learn this lesson, most likely, most of my life. But maybe one day—one Prime day—I will rejoice in the purpose more than the plans. -Rachelle