Sometimes I will see something or read or experience something and my heart will swell and my brain will fill with words and emotions and I will have to write it out. I have ignored it sometimes because I am in the middle of something and then the experience dulls and it becomes less important and I am not able to give the subject the justice it deserves. I had the feeling ten minutes ago and I left everything I was doing, including a mess in the kitchen.
I was cleaning out the kitchen cupboards (desperately needed it!) including pulling out fridge (dustpan full of crap, how?!) and I saw my Tupperware full of toddler spoons. And my heart hurt. Because I am trying to minimize and simplify our life. I am trying to get rid of things we have doubles of and that we never use (hello, random kitchen tools). But those baby spoons. Who knows if any more babies will come our way. Who knows if I will ever have the desire to try to have more babies after the miscarriages. I don’t know. But I can’t get rid of the spoons.
They are gnarled and not expensive. They are probably from Walmart or Target. They are faded and dish washed and old. I could easily replace them if we do have another baby down the road. But my drawer has held beginning eater plastic spoons for 11 years now. I am used to seeing them and never using them, expect for when the occasional baby comes over. I am used to them filling a space in our drawer and in my heart.
Yes, they are just spoons. Yes, they are old. Yes, I have the memories and all that. But they are part of me. They are a part of our family and our history. I know what to do with these spoons, unlike teenagers. I don’t’ know what to do with teenagers. I know how much food a baby needs. I know when to feed them oatmeal or rice cereal or start them on vegetables. I know how much to put on the spoon to keep them from gagging. These spoons are part of an era. An era that might be ending for our family.
I know I’ll have to face the music someday and throw them away. I know I will have to go through baby clothes, the crib and all the baby toys but not today. Today, I will keep those spoons in the drawer (in spite of what “sparks joy” for me). I will notice them from time to time and have them on hand in case a toddler comes by. And I will move forward in this process. Because who is to say we won’t have more kids. And who is the judge of when it is time to move on. Just me. One day, I’ll be ready to face the music but today, I will place those spoons back in the Tupperware and push it to the back of the drawer. Because for me, that is where they belong.