This weekend, I decided to undertake Mission Impossible. Otherwise known as, “Operation Get Rid of the Stuff We No Longer Need.”
I started with baby bottles, nursing accessories and bibs that were no longer needed. I found countless pacifiers sprinkled throughout the house. My son hasn’t used a paci since he was 9 months old but I just couldn’t bring myself to part ways with them until now. I tackled Chip’s overflowing dresser, which still contained clothes for 0-6 months. Then I moved on to the toys scattered throughout the house.
I cleaned. I purged. I filled huge, Goodwill-destined garbage balls full of clothes, toys and baby paraphernalia. Some bags were earmarked for the trash; others for family members of friends. Mission Impossible was off to a good start.
But when I got to my daughter’s room, I came to a screeching halt. Because there, nestled in the back of her dresser drawers, I discovered the neatly folded pile of The Sweaters.
The Sweaters are all that remain of my brief foray into knitting a few years back. And as I took each tiny garment out, I quickly forgot about the organizing and purging.
Instead, I ventured down memory lane. And I realized each sweater, poncho and tiny little hat held special significance for me.
Like the first piece of clothing I ever made for one of my children. My first knitting project, actually. I still remember ripping out rows upon rows of laboriously knit stitches and redoing them until I got it right.
Or sweaters knit for special occasions. Like Valentine’s Day:
Or ones that were just used for doing yardwork:
And probably a dozen other creations that I forget to get pictures of when they still fit her. Yeah. When I got to the stack of The Sweaters, all of my good intentions to purge and get rid of things no longer used just flew out the window.
I don’t need them anymore. She’s long since outgrown them. But I just can’t bear to part ways with them.
They symbolize late nights curled up on the couch; the quiet only being interrupted by the clicking of two needles together. Well, that and a few choice swear words thrown in here and there when a mistake was discovered.
They are mementos of a pigtailed little toddler who actually wore skirts. And who still let me dress her.
Clearly, they are reminders of just how much time I had on my hands when I had just had one child. (Hello! I haven’t picked up a knitting needle since Chip was born.)
They are labors of my love.
So I created a new bag. One especially reserved for The Sweaters. It lies in the back of her closet.
For just the right person to give them to. Or for a day when I get particularly un-sentimental and decide to finally send them to Goodwill.
Or maybe they’re waiting for the day when they’re finally worn again. By a niece, perhaps? Or maybe, if I’m lucky, by a granddaughter? I can only hope.
For the time being, though, the bag sits in the back of my daughter’s closet.
It is special. It contains sweaters. And a lot of love.