This past weekend I started doing baby laundry. We have been very, very fortunate in that a few of our friends are parents of boys who have outgrown a lot of clothing and other baby supplies. This means that we have been able to accumulate a good collection of things for baby Jack in a variety of sizes and seasons. Our little guy is going to want for very little in the way of clothing for awhile. I sat down on Saturday and went through the piles, organizing things by size in an attempt to get a sense of what we have and any gaps in what we need.
Once the piles were made and I started to do the laundry I found myself having a little bit of a panic attack. Up to this point my anxiety has come from financial concerns, largely things like having enough money for maternity leave, to get all of the things we will need, to pay for day care, etc. This time, however, I was freaking out over stuff. I haven’t gotten everything washed and put away and already just one size of Jack’s little outfits takes up the entire chest of drawers that was supposed to hold all of this things. Then I looked around the room trying to figure out various options for where I could add additional storage and realized that I, as an adult person, have far too many things. It made me think about how I want my son to view life and the world and if I want him to be mired down in the accumulation of things.
My mother was a bit of a hoarder. She had a lot of things, a lot of collections, and she didn’t get rid of much. Since her passing it has been a great deal of work and effort on the part of my father to sort through her things and decide what to keep and what to move on. I’ve been starting to do some of that myself with things I held onto only because Mom felt like I should. Now that I’m expecting my own child, though, I don’t want to have a lot of stuff. I want to trim down, keep what matters and what is needed, and make sure that there is always room. Being able to effectively have a clean house is a perk. So as I work my way through tiny baby laundry I find myself thinking about how to streamline my life. The next several weeks are pretty much back-to-back busy, with house guests, a trip to New Orleans, my brother’s wedding shower, a makeup gig, and probably my own baby shower. I may have only one or two weekends to dig in and clear things out. I’m still working on my plan, but I know for sure that I want it done. Fewer things, more time, more family time.
Funny how it takes a little thing to make you realize the importance of the little things.