Thursday, April 17, 2014

Giving Away My Children's Childhood

Pardon me while I wipe the tears away. I'm cleaning out. And it is such hard work. Not because of the physical difficulty, but the emotional. I'm giving away my children's childhood.

I'm not, I know. I'm giving away their toys. Those objects that occupied my kids for hours on end and brought them endless joy. It makes me sad to part with these brightly colored, loud, light-up monstrosities. As it was, Elmo Live! was still yelling at me to sing and dance. But as I packed Elmo away (face down because I'm kind of cruel), this is what I'm really thinking about:

Also, my son HATED any of those toys that sang and danced. Until this Christmas, he was terrified of them and this Elmo is the one that helped him over his fear.

I packed up my diaper bags and Baby Bjorn. The diaper bag/backpack that I took when we went to Hawaii when my son was not even two.

Hardest for me is the Fisher Price Little People. The farm set has been kicking around our house for nine years. My daughter spent hours upon hours in her room with them all set up.

I'm certainly happy to be freeing up space in closets, the playroom and the basement. We're going to start the process of finishing our basement and the first step is cleaning it out. This will certainly help. Then, the playroom will get moved to the basement/family room and I will get an official office. It is all good and this hard work needs to be done first. I know it. I just can't figure out why I have such an emotional attachment to stuff.

My kids want for nothing (unless you ask them and I'm sure they could list all the things that they don't have). They have and have had more toys than they even know what to do with. They will not miss most of what I'm giving away. And we're donating to a good cause. It is all for large non-profit garage sale that is held every year to benefit people living with Multiple Sclerosis. Hopefully, this helps the cause.

I know that giving away these toys does not change the quality of my children's childhood, other than to teach them how to be charitable. It won't change the good times. Keeping the toys will not make them little again.

I know that there are people out there who can just give things away. I talked to a woman recently who was looking to give away her wedding dress. She said she gives away everything and hates that she has to keep some mementos for her kids. I envy that ability. I haven't even give away the supplies I used to make the favors for my wedding.

So, I keep cleaning and piling stuff up. My donation pile is impressive. Somehow there is not as much room as I thought there'd be, but it is a start. I am happy to have the stuff out, but I still feel guilty. My kids are growing up too fast, even without me giving it away.

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