Sunday, January 25, 2015

Gratitude

I was standing there in front of the stuffed trunk of our car, carefully planning where to pack the last of the bags and loose items. It was donation day. I was consciously feeling and experiencing the act of what I was busy with, and I was overcome with emotion. But perhaps not the kind of emotion one would suspect. 


Yes, for 2 months I have been packing and sorting the boys' baby clothes and baby items and excess toys. Initially it took me incredibly long, because I would sit with each babygrow or vest and reminisce about when I held a baby wearing it. What he looked like and what he smelled like...


Daddy burping our week-old Zee.

Loving our week-old Vee.


When revisiting those baby days became too unbearable I would usually just give up on the sorting and packing and go do something else. But my urge to de-clutter eventually got the better of me, thank goodness! And I also had  an epiphany. I realised that I am holding on to material things to keep beautiful memories alive. I realised that I had to let go of the things, but not in a sorrowful kind of way, but rather in a thankful way. That I should celebrate the many memories we have of the times when they were small and we were able to use those baby items. And most importantly: Celebrate the here and now. Then it became easier, and now I am so thankful for this whole process of cleaning, changing, embracing, finding more things to be grateful for, being in the moment and more grateful than I could ever imagine. 


You see, standing there in front of that trunk, I finally realised that the clothes that my babies had more than enough of meant that we had babies. Not one, but two beautiful, healthy babies! There was a time when the idea of little feet seemed like a dream.

Those baby clothes meant that our babies were cared for. They were warm. I realised how privileged we were that the boys were never once admitted to hospital during their baby days. And having enough warm clothes and blankets sure helped with that.

So many of the clothes and blankets were gifts. which meant that our babies were loved by our family and friends. Even before they were born. Our family and friends were excited with us and for us for our babies. And they often showed this by gifting us with the sweetest little clothes, warm and cuddly blankets and lovely toys. My babies' great grandmother hand-knitted them socks and hoodies. We are forever grateful for such love and kindness.  

I looked at the bags and bags of toys, which caused for many an hour of play and learn. Time that I was able to share with my boys since I am a stay-at-home mom. Most privileged under the privileged am I, how do I say thank you for that?! The most beautiful time of my life. 

Then I noted all the bath toys, which meant that our boys are able to take daily baths, to relax before  bedtime and have a final few minutes of play and learn in the tub. This also meant that we have uninterrupted access to water. I am grateful!

Today I am grateful for all we have, all that was borrowed to us, all that we have been gifted and all that was shared. The incredible amount of beautiful, everlasting memories that were created with these earthly belongings playing a role in. We have the pictures to prove it. We have two happy, healthy, smiling boys to prove it. My cup overflows! I can just say thank you. And can hope that there is one or more child that will benefit from warm clothes or a warm blanket. A boy or girl that may receive a toy which can bring a smile. And thank you to organisations that spend their time, money and effort to bring our previously much-enjoyed items to new homes where it can be used and loved.