Let’s be honest here…I knew there would be sadness, but I didn’t know to this level. Does this sadness change my mind about my decision? Absolutely not. I’m just shocked.
The past few weeks I’ve begun the cleaning up and cleaning out process of baby toys and clothing. Since my husband and I made the decision to have a tubal ligation, I see no need in keeping my house cluttered with baby paraphernalia. I’ve separated out the stained from the pristine, the broken from the fully functional, the slightly used to the completely demolished. I’ve offloaded some of said product at consignment stores, sales, craigslist, and even the Salvation Army.
The first batch was a set of newborn to 3 month old clothing. Truly, this didn’t sadden me as I saw how quickly people were snatching the items up at the consignment sale and my check was growing larger. It was nice to see some money coming from the items, especially since we operate off of one income. The next thing to go was the Mamaroo, which was by far one of our greatest purchases if not for Davey then definitely for Henry. It’s like the Bentley of swings and retails for $200. Davey didn’t use it quite so much, but for the first month of Henry’s life, this was literally the only thing he would sleep in. It became my saving grace, my little piece of sanity in an otherwise crazy world.
I posted the item on craigslist and sold it promptly. As I drove downtown to meet the mother who was to purchase the swing, I had an intense level of excitement. We were getting $100 for this bad boy, something that didn’t cost us a single penny thanks to baby showers and gift cards. We were literally profiting off of this and I was excited to have the cumbersome thing out of my house, but something happened when I put it into the back of the mother’s van. I stroked the seat and walked her through the mechanics of the swing. I touched the spot I had dutifully cleaned where Henry’s diaper had leaked out and I thought back to those days of him whimpering while he slept, the little stretches and yawns, while the swing rocked him off to dreamland. I thought about the nights I was wide awake with him, sitting downstairs in the recliner with the television on, while he rocked away sleepily in the swing. I thought about how he slept through Christmas in that swing…his first Christmas, just 12 days old. And for a brief moment, as the van drove away, I had a lump in my throat. That one little swing had so many memories.
Today, I hauled off a few other items to the Salvation Army. More clothing, accessories, and even Davey and Henry’s tummy time mat. I watched as the gentleman working the garage haphazardly took the contraption from my hands and tossed it into a bin. My mind starting thinking about those poor toys from the movie Toy Story and then it drifted off to what memories were stored up in that little mat. Davey had his roll over on that mat. I was still working at that point. My house was a disaster, I was a disaster, but nothing else mattered except for life around Davey and watching him as he rocked himself a few times before finally flipping from his back to his tummy. What a proud moment that was. And then there’s Henry and his first roll over at just about the same age as his big brother. Now the mat is off to hopefully create new memories with other families.
All of these thoughts have begun to swirl through my head lately and it saddens me. My boys are growing. Chapters have been written, memories made, and new chapters are in progress. I can always unfold those previous chapters in my brain, to read through them at any point, but they are done. There are no more like those, which has its up and downs. It saddens me that I won’t have this opportunity with another child. Does it sadden me to the point of regretting my decision? Absolutely not. I’m blessed and fortunate with the two healthy, happy, smart little boys I have. I’m sure I could handle a third, but at almost the age of 40, I don’t think I really want to.
There are still items left in the house…baby toys, the jumparoo, and even ride on cars for which Davey is much too big, but Henry is just getting to the age to enjoy. There are more memories to be made and I look forward to each waking morning when I get the opportunity to make those memories. Still, I never really knew how much purging my house of never to be used again baby items would affect me.