I have been cleaning out closets the last few weeks, because I don’t need to keep all the baby clothes Cole no longer fits into. I decided to consign almost all of them, and then what didn’t sell, donate to a local pregnancy center.
How hard can that be- bag up clothes and drop them off? Evidently pretty hard if you are a sentimental, sappy mama, like me. Every outfit, shirt, pair of pants, and shorts, brought back some kind of memory with both my boys. I remembered the first time Ryan wore a shirt, and then remembered of course, the first time Cole wore it, on and on. No wonder it has taken me weeks to go through everything.
I suppose this goes deeper than an outfit- when I see the cute little baby clothes that my “babies” don’t fit into anymore, it reminds me of that time not so long ago, when they were babies. I remember what they were like when they did fit in the clothes that I am packing up, to give away.
In all honesty, it feels like I am giving a part of their “babyhood” away. Will I ever wish one day that I had that special outfit Ryan wore in his first picture? Will I regret not keeping the cute overalls that Cole loved to wear? I even thought about saving some clothes to give to the boys way down the road, when they have babies.
The thought of storing clothes for at least twenty plus years or more, snapped me back into reality. I don’t want to become a pack rat, holding on to everything which reminds me of when the boys were babies, or toddlers, or pre-schoolers, etc. The only reason I would be saving them, is because I would want to try to preserve a piece of those times. I have other ways of doing that, without having to be a clothes hoarder for the next twenty years.
As my boys get bigger though, there really aren’t that many clothes worth saving. Between all the mud, dirt, and grass stains on their shirts, and torn knees in their pants, I am happy to get rid of them.
I do have just a few special outfits that I am saving. My favorites are the little onesies the hospital gave them as newborns. I look at those ever so often, and am just amazed how small they are, and that they were actually big on my babies as newborns.
So with the back of my car packed to the brim of all these baby clothes to donate, which are no longer needed, I feel good they have another life ahead of them. Perhaps another mother will love the same outfits I did. Maybe one day in the not so distance future, she will be faced with having to decide what to give away, and what to keep, and she too, will be remembering the first time her baby boy wore that special outfit. If I could meet that mother who will receive my boys’ clothes, I would tell her to enjoy- enjoy every minute with her baby-it goes so fast.
Getting rid of the clothes helped me realize, when the baby clothes no longer fit, and there is a beautiful child instead, in that baby’s place- you don’t need have to have bags of clothes to remember him as a baby-you just do.
Update: 5/30/08- I dropped off the clothes along with some other baby equipment no longer needed, this morning. I took them to a pregnancy center which helps usually younger women who are faced with an unplanned pregnancy. I felt sad, thinking about all the clothes that I would never see again. When the receptionist saw how many clothes and other items I had, she was amazed. She told me they never get that many items donated, and it was a real blessing. I took my stuff to their stock room, and they only had a few toys- no clothes whatsoever! She just kept telling me thank you, and they would be put to such great use.
That made it all worth while- I know I will remember my boys’ being babies, and I am so glad their clothes will have a useful second life.