Sometimes there is a war that wages inside us. On one hand, we know that we aren’t giving up. On the other hand, we feel like we’re giving up. It can be a very disheartening place to be in. Which side will win? Will we collapse with tears of frustration or look forward with hearts of hope? Or maybe we just hang between the two tilting one way and then the other like a coin set precariously on its edge.
I have reached one such moment in my life.
It all started when I started seriously decluttering my home. I knew there would be many easy items. There would also be many difficult items. I knew I would have to face emotions and other unsettling thoughts. Despite knowing that, when my daughter requested a small outfit to dress her monkey in, I found myself looking at a large box that held baby clothes. And since I had it out, I might as well declutter it.
As my daughter grew out of her clothing, I kept some and gave others away. I had been given enough clothing for three wardrobes so it wasn’t too difficult to cull it down to just one wardrobe. I had one large box for newborn to 12 months and another for 12m-2T. That’s pretty good, right? I have even less from 3+ since my sister graciously shared her girls clothing.
It’s just clothes, right?
And actually, it is just clothes. I took those two large boxes down to one small box. That part was not hard. It was very easy to choose which items I wanted to keep and which I didn’t. I found myself flying through those two boxes trying to keep half my mind on my audiobook and not fully on my difficult task.
The hard part was the blow that felt like I was giving up. My daughter is five now. Giving up clothes in a way feels like I am giving up on having another child.
It has been a regular emotional struggle to not be pregnant again. I’m very familiar with this feeling particularly with an irregular cycle. The reminder that it’s worthless to test and to just wait another week. The constant thought in the back of my mind that well, maybe this could finally be it. The stern talk back that I will only be disappointed. And still finding myself with a heavy heart and tear-filled eyes when I am right. The hurt fades away as the hormonal crazies do and the sharp pain can be ignored for a few more weeks.
So now I have less baby clothing which is really okay with me. I’ll be okay when I declutter other baby items. Toys, books (maybe…), cloth diapers. But I’ll still feel that prickle of tears threatening to appear, that stab that says “if you do this, you’re giving up”, and then I’ll turn my God and thank him for my beautiful daughter and pray that I will find peace if I am only sent her. I will pray for others who have the same struggle or similar struggles. And I will pray with the faith of my little daughter that we can have another one.
Will I ever not feel this way? It is difficult to feel like I am giving up.