Aloof. Weird. Dirty. Lazy. Liar. Drunk. Crazy. Call me all the derogatory things you can think of, but there is one thing I’m not: “Pack-Rat.” We’ve carried all this baby shit around with us through two moves, and I have had a itch to get rid of it all since just after Emerson was born. Now is the time, and I’m unpacking all the littlest baby clothes, and getting them ready to bid farewell.
Things are just things. That is my mantra. You won’t find many (read: any) meaningless keepsakes floating around my life. I keep photographs – although not many – and I keep selected writings and journals. That’s it. And the memories. Most of all I enjoy the memories. The rest is just a bunch of clutter. Clutter in the house. Clutter in the mind. Clutter in the soul.
Then why are these tiniest of clothes making me so sentimental? It would have been one thing if I just took entire bins and dropped them off at Goodwill, but for consignment, I have to go through each item, one by one, examining it closely for stains and tears. That is, I have to go back through each moment of each child’s infant life in which they were wearing each outfit. Every single little onesie and gown brought me to tears, remembering my past life with these girls of mine. Those weeks after they were first born when my bedroom seemed like the entire world. When each act was so careful and important and full of love. It brought me back to those quiet, tender moments in the night, when the entire world was asleep except for my child and I. There is nothing in the world like those early weeks of a child’s new life.
But there are the harder times too. Matty and I took this photo so that we would remember.
That baby always needed to be held, and in motion. Always. Or she cried. Sometimes she cried anyway. Right.
So it’s all not a honeymoon, but oh those littlest, tiniest clothes!
With all these third baby thoughts in my head lately, one would think the clothes would put me over the top. But actually, it made me realize where my heart truly lies. I don’t want to have another baby. Another baby will just grow out of those tiny little clothes, just as my girls did. What I want is to have another moment with those babies of mine. I would like to go back and do their entire lives over again, and this time savor every single moment, because now I know how fast they go.
But I did savor every moment, and know I am keeping it upfront in my mind to savor every moment I am given with these children, because before I know it, they won’t be children anymore. It’s very cliche, but sometimes we need reminders.
This time may have receded into the background of my life,
AND I’ve decided to keep something: the first piece of clothing I put each girl in after they were born. I just couldn’t let them go…