Common household dangers – we are all warned about them when we give birth. We put child locks on the detergent cupboards, barriers on the stairs and remove all breakables and so on. All this to protect our innocent and vulnerable offspring.
No-one warns us about them.
My father used to tell me that toys came alive at midnight.
They do. They evolve. They move.
They form little armies.
They plan and execute battle strategies.
It’s Toy Story gone bad.
Very very bad.
The digital alarm clock casts its eerie green light across the room. It is 2 am. The dark of the night. All is quiet.
A voice shatters the silence, the cry of a child in the grip of night-time terrors.
I am moving before I am awake, swinging my legs over the bed caught in the biological instinct of a mother to protect her child.
Under my foot is something wet, furry and very very dead. I stifle the urge to scream and peer down at the floor in cold sweating horror. A small boy strategically placed a wet rat soft toy next to my bed.
It is fine.
I am fine.
I recover and walk forward…
Right onto the handle of a plastic toy rake.
This time I cannot stop the scream of sheer agony as it’s razor sharp tines stab my shin.
I hobble forward and took off on the roof of a small matchbox car landing with a thump on a tiny piece of Star Wars Lego.
No-one warns us of the dangers of child-friendly, educational toys.
They can kill a parent.