The Green Mighty Morphin’ Power Ranger.
The Power Ranger who started out evil, but turned good. A character that would become a literal legend both in the Power Rangers fictional universe, and to fans across the globe spanning the last 20 years of my life.
I wanted that action figure. I wanted it so much that I had begged my mother for it, wanting nothing else for any other gift giving day. At eight years old, I had to have it or else it would be the end of the world.
My mother called and went to every toy store in Bartow County. She searched in Calhoun. She searched in Rome. She searched in Atlanta. She had our neighbor search in Atlanta. Before the days on online shopping, my mom hunted down that action figure with more tenacity than a last minute eBay bidder.
One evening, she slipped away to our neighbor’s house. I watched out the window for her, as dinner time was approaching and she had yet to set the food out on the table. I was wedged between my grandfather’s antique wooden recliner and our sofa, nose pressed against the window watching. My stomach growled, shouting for me to feed it soon.
Just when I was about to give up, I saw her. Walking through the weeds that ran between our fence and the road. Clutching something to her chest. Clutching something tightly beneath the fabric. At first, I panicked. I thought she might be dying, because to a eight year old who watched far too much Rescue 911, that was a classic heart attack reaction.
But no. As she got closer, reaching our driveway and walking towards the house, I could see she was hiding something beneath her shirt. She slowed down, spotting me in the window. She used one hand to shoo me from it.
I was excited. I had no idea what she had, but she was hiding it. Therefore, I had to know. I had to see it. I had to find out what it was. So I left the window, running to the nearby hallway and hiding behind the wall. I heard the front door open, and I peeked around the corner quickly, ducking back behind the wall.
I heard her sigh. “Oh alright!” she exclaimed.
I popped out from the hallway. In her outstretched hands… the holy grail of my childhood. The Green Mighty Morphin’ Power Ranger.
I screamed in sheer delight. I screamed in absolute joy. I gave my mom a kiss on the cheek. A big hug, then ran to my room with my new toy, ripping the plastic with my bare hands to get to it. And each time I made the head flip to show the Power Ranger mask, I laughed and I smiled.
I played with that action figure until I was 13 years old. After that, it had started to fall apart. But I still kept it. Finally, when I was 17, all I had left was the head, no longer attached to the body. The body, long gone.
And then, it was lost. I don’t know where it, or the box I kept it in.
Now many years later the story is known in my family as The Legendary Hunt for the Green Ranger. And with each telling I realize something more. A new moral. Another epiphany.
Yet, the core message stays the same. The core message that at 5 years old I was far too young to understand. One that I didn’t truly understand until I had a little nipper of my very own.
A mother will do anything for her child. No matter how mundane, tedious, crazy, ridiculous, time consuming, redundant, or downright scary. A mother will do anything for her children, even if it’s driving around North West Georgia at the height of the holiday season, looking for one specific toy and accepting no substitutes.