This week has been a little less ordinary than most with the Mr taking the week off work, it has been a busy one with time together and has also meant lots of jobs around the house being tackled, our bedroom has finally had a makeover and we set to sorting out the little jobs, the ones that get put off as life with two children, school and jobs takes over and wanting to fill other times with fun and adventure.
As I tackled the spare room with its piles of paperwork to file, ironing to do and boxes to relocate in the loft I came to the collection of clothes, clothes that over the last few months my Little Ladies seem to have grown out of at a rate of knots. And I stopped. I paused, I looked at the clothes, I looked at those neatly folded items of multicoloured cotton and I didn’t just see the mass of material that we have probably spent a small fortune on over the years, I saw the memories.
The tiny little sleepsuits when I worried if they were warm enough as we cuddled into yet another night feed, the winters day in that cute vest which then exploded with poo all over it, the grass stain I had to scrub from the knee after a particularly fun afternoon playing football in the garden, all those beautiful tops I wish still fit and the dresses that I have seen both my Little Ladies grow in and out of. I was packing them away knowing that the time was now over. I see the memories, the moments, not the clothes.
I study E’s clothes and remember what conversations we had on that day, and I think of the possibilities, I wonder what R will look like come the time we bring these back down from the loft and what adventures they will both have had. There is something special about hand me downs as a parent, to see both of your children live the same part of their lives in the same clothes and to be instantly reminded of those precious moments when the time comes to wear them again.
So I boxed them up, sorted them all into sizes and kept practically everything, for what reason I am not sure, but for now that is where in my heart I know they should stay. And as I went through them I came across the little yellow coat. The one that R has had in 3 sizes since she was 6 months old simply because I love it so much and it suits her so well. I stared at it. I stared and started to get emotional as I had flashbacks of all the times, of the months we had been through, the journey she had come on with this little coat for company.
Whenever a memory was made, a snapshot taken there it was, that little speck of yellow, the little coat that means she was there. To witness the journey from a crawling 6 month old who had just lost the mass of dark hair she was born with to make way for the blonde that was taking it’s time to appear. Through the first days of E’s school when we came down the hill feeling like a part of our team was missing; then the teachers looking for the yellow through the sea of parents when it was time to be reunited. So many firsts, first steps at 9 months when she was just too small to be walking around with a confidence far greater than her age, first teeth, first shoes, first Christmas, first snow, first time ice skating and of course a first birthday. It has lived in the many many awkward moments with well meaning people of just how lovely or how small or how adorable or how well dressed this little boy was, and mummy’s nod and smile reaction masking my sigh. Through moments so momentous and moments of ordinary, trips to the park chasing geese without so much as a second glance, holding hands with a big sister, even sitting down on the pavement when it all became too much to walk another step. Learning to walk in wellies at Easter, the inside jokes between siblings that make both squeal with delight and laugh till they cry, and moments of diva behavior with a refusal of more photos.
It has seen seasons change with crunchy leaves under newly walking feet, pouring rain requiring a whole change of clothes, an array of hats and scarves, surprising snow and bright blue skies too, it has seen us through it all. To now; a walking, running, jumping, talking bundle of absolute joy.
There is a reason this coat was meant for my littlest lady, yellow to me just screams happiness, it’s the visual sunshine of life, the colour that never fails to make me smile, which just so happens to be exactly how I feel about R. The huge ray of sunshine we were lucky to have scream her way into our family 15 months ago and to bring more happiness and more joy into it than she will ever know. She has the biggest smile, the warmest heart, the most cheeky nature and is without doubt the sunshine in our lives.
Now I know I shouldn’t be sad, and I shouldn’t go out and buy it in every size till she is 18 years old but I can’t help to feel emotional as I pack it away that this stage is over, that it signifies so much and that maybe I just wanted to keep her my baby forever!
So instead of packing it away, of leaving a world of possibilities locked in a box at the top of the house, it has been lovingly passed on to my adorable little nephew, let’s hope he has just as many adventures and happy moments as my little lady has in The Little Yellow Coat.
Linking with the lovely Katie at Mummy Daddy Me for “The Ordinary Moments”