Like every other little kid, I loved my toys. From stuffed animals, to Beanie Babies, to my horse figurines; these were my most prized possessions in the early years of my life. I was not a doll-kind-of-girl, but I had a slight obsession with animals. They all had names, personalities, and relationships with the other toys and I would spend hours in my room lost deep in epic battles defending the fort of sheets and clothes pins, or running in the wild fields of our hallways with my untamed mustang herd. There was certainly no lack of creativity in my games. Let loose, my imagination allowed me to freely converse with my stuffed animals and watch the drama unfold among my figurines as they survived wars and clashes between rival clans.
Looking back on it now, I miss the worlds I could create in my mind and lose myself in for hours on end. Each story has a fuzzy haze to it in my memory – and they all bring up feelings of fondness and love for such inanimate objects. Pulling out my old toys makes me realize that they were more than just toys for a young girl. Sifting through the dozens of Beanie Babies, I realize they are still more than just toys. Each has a story, and I still remember almost all of their names. What looks like a picture with a bunch of stuffed animals to you is more like a family picture to me. And the feelings of nostalgia for another life, another world, run deep as I look back on them.