I have no idea whether I'm done growing babies. If up to Jon, I’m pretty sure the answer would be that we’re done (perhaps emphatically so after last night’s teething-induced lack of sleep). However, it’s harder for me to say that. I can’t help it. I loved being pregnant. I love babies. Jon and I make really sweet ones. However, I’m also pretty tired right now given everything I have going on, coupled with the fact that Violet – now walking and extremely excited about her newly discovered ability to scamper up the stairs – pretty much kicks my ass sometimes.
There is one thing that has become certain to me though, particularly as I’ve been writing Minimalist Parenting with Asha: I can’t bear to hold on to baby things I may or may not need in the future when there are people who need them now. This week I felt so much lighter – emotionally and physically – by doing the following:
1. I filled five (!) kitchen sized garbage bags with stuffed animals and toys. I was thrilled to find a website that coordinates gently used stuffed animal donations to put the items in the hands of kids who could use a lovey. I was actually a little ashamed to have this many bags of gently used or new with tag stuffed animals and toys, but at least they are now all en route to new homes. (I didn't even have to take them anywhere - a charity came to pick up the toys for me!)
2. Our town is coordinating a toy/clothing/gear drive for local families in need. Yesterday I loaded my car and dropped off: 1) a stroller that we never used (since we had two other hand me down strollers – regular + jogger – that suited our purposes); 2) a stroller base (this was awesome when Violet was a baby); 3) a high chair (we just use one of those Fisher Price boosters to save space); and 4) two baby play gyms. All of these items were handed down to me when I learned I was pregnant with Violet (and had already given away all of my baby gear assuming secondary infertility).
Who knows what the future will bring but it feels so good to not wait for maybe. And it was awesome to have Laurel be so excited to share items with other families. These are the moments when I feel like I'm doing well as a parent.