I’ve been cleaning! Yup, it’s like I’m nesting, but I’m not. It all started in the kitchen one day, and then successfully moved to the cellar, various closets, and culminated with an attack of the ever popular under bed storage containers. Needless to say, it takes time and a strong will to clean out properly; there are tough, even grueling decisions to be made: to trash, to donate, to keep?
I was well aware that under a guest room bed loomed two containers: one of photos, the other my children’s grade school artwork and writing projects. Yes, I’m one of those mom’s that tried to keep the first scribble and poem each of my children’s creative little minds effortlessly produced. When I opened those treasure boxes, a flood of memories washed over me.
Besides my children’s stash, I also happened upon photos from my husband’s and my childhood, and I shared those with my youngest son, which prompted him to ask, “If you were given the option to relive your childhood or relive mine, which would you choose?” Without hesitation, I replied, “I’d re-live yours without a doubt.” He was amazed by my quick response, but he understood that I had two life experiences to base my answer on, where he only had the one.
The joy of being a mother to my three children trumps all of my youthful experiences. Watching first smiles, laughs, steps; taking note of curiosity, expression, need; offering comfort, support, direction; encouraging creativity, desire, hope…it was so worth being there for all of that! Selfishly, if I had to choose, I’d want another front row seat when it comes to sharing time with my young children.
My kid’s may be twenty somethings now, but the artwork, the photos, the written material, it all reminds me of mostly happy days gone but not forgotten. In an effort to be organized I bought photo boxes, simple carry portfolio cases for artwork, and beautiful boxes for school work. I went through each piece, lingering here and there, placing them in their new homes, away from harm, and finally out from under the bed.
Of course, I’m no dummy, I know that the boxes and cases most likely will not leave my home until the day I die, but when they do, I hope my children will know how much I treasured and savored every moment with them.