4 kids in 3 years: reflections on motherhood, art and life.
Another long-overdue thank you.
Dear Ole Kirk Christiansen (May I call you Ole?),
It was great reading about you in Wikipedia the other day. I’m sorry this thank you is so long coming. Is 39 years too long to wait to write a thank you? I mean, I couldn’t even read when I first discovered Legos.
Ah, glorious Legos.
I remember clearly my first Lego sets, the green boards and mostly red and white pieces. We even had a few doors and windows which were awkwardly proportioned compared to the standard 2 x 4 Lego brick, and there were never enough 1 x 4s. But I loved my Legos from the first day. Over the years I built everything from high rises and people, to a model of a summer home with a wrap-around porch and views of the ocean for my mother. Really. She tells the local toy shop owner every time she buys Legos for my kids, which thankfully, is often.
To be honest, there was a time when I forgot about you and all you did for me. I may have even resented you and your addictive Lego bricks when I arrived at Yale, looked at the requirements for a major in Architecture and realized that, contrary to my mother’s belief, Legos had in no way prepared me for Physics 180. But, I digress. At age 42 I am again beholden to you and the hours of creative play you engender.
Because I have to say, Legos is (Legos are? Is Legos plural?!) the toy my children will play with for hours (or at least very many minutes) with no need for my help, almost no sibling fighting and unlimited creative possibility. Admittedly, I curse you daily (or at the very least, mutter a curse in your name) when I catch the corner of a scritch-scratching 2 x 2 brick in the sole of my foot. But in the end, that’s a small price to pay for being able to run a load of laundry upstairs while four children between the ages of 3 and 6 play pleasantly together.
So thank you. Thank you for stealing the patent from Hilary Page (at least that’s what Wikipedia said you did), for making them plastic and not wood, for allowing your son to push the whole “Duplo” issue. I wish Legos weren’t so expensive, that’s true. But more than anything, I’m just grateful. You have allowed me to roll over in the morning and mumble, “Mommy needs 5 more minutes to sleep because Cabot woke her up again last night. Go. play. with. Legos.” with no guilt. And who could ask for more than that?