Choo-choo likes to act out things we have read in his books. He has a book called “The Magic Moon Machine” from the 1980s that he just loves. It’s about a little boy who wants to ride in a spaceship to go to the moon with an astronaut. Problem is, the boy brings far too much stuff, which of course makes the machine too heavy to lift off.
My son decided to do re-enact this book with our giant maroon cushion serving as the space craft. He insisted on piling train tracks, telephones, cranes, even a box of tissues on top. I did the countdown while pressing buttons and moving levers. Then our cushion spaceship wouldn’t move.
Choo-choo had a simple solution. He got out and stepped aside, knowing it would be lighter without him. He then began counting down for me. “One, two, five, nine, ten, fourteen. Off you go!” This was finished said with a big silly, proud grin.
After a few tries, our machine finally lifted off into space. Choo-choo was having a blast pretending. That is, until I told him we were in outer space and the Earth was a tiny little dot in the distance. His eyes grew wide, and the color drained from his face. This no longer felt like make believe to him.
I asked him if he wanted to go back home. With a quick nod in the affirmative, Choo-choo asked what we needed to do to get there. I made the noises of firing the engines, blasting us into the Earth’s atmosphere again, and landing once more. We returned home safely to fly our spaceship another day.