I've been stacking them up for over five years. They were not in piles of any organization. They were not organized by size. They were not organized by age. They were falling down and tipping over under their own weight. They were neglected. They were hidden away. Many of them I could not see. They were avoided until today.
Today, they helped me to face my past and acknowledge my present.
They are a symbol of what I feel could have been. They are shadows of my past. They hit me in the pit of my heart. They get to the core of my being. They evoke my deepest regrets and failures.
They run the gamut of smallest to large. They were supposed to represent a time of joy and pride. Simply put, they make me cry.
They are my daughters' baby clothes. Each one I touched evoked a different memory.
The tiny purple knit hat which Gracie wore the first time I held her. I was so scared that I'd pull her central line out of her scalp. I couldn't really see her just that large hat on her tiny 3 pound body. I remember thinking it looked like a Smurf hat. That hat I kept. I couldn't part with it.
Preemie socks which remind me of the smallest feet I've ever seen. On Meghan's legs, those socks went all the way up to her thighs. I kept those too.
Onesies which had spit up stains. Little pink sleepers and the cutest little dresses. All of these memories remind me of what I can no longer have. My body can't be pregnant anymore...not without endangering my own life and the life of any unborn baby. Preeclampsia took that opportunity away.
Those tiny little clothes are now packed away into a large shopping bag and are destined for my local Goodwill donation center.
I only hope that they bring someone else joy, pride, happiness, and good memories.