Growing Pains

#2 and #3 wore these. Will I ever cuddle another babe close in these?

#2 and #3 wore and outgrew these. Will I ever cuddle another baby close in these fleece footies?

It never gets easier, packing away my children’s outgrown clothes. Folding and boxing memories. I tearfully hold up footie pajamas to see the outline of my growing child’s former frame. I touch the worn cotton of favorite shirts, feeling memories seep through the threads.

As I pack away #3’s too-small clothes, I realize it is entirely possible I will never see another of my babies wear these items again. There are so many ifs… if we can manage another child, if we have another child, if it’s a girl, if it’s a boy. My breath catches and my eyes well.

It’s an odd conundrum. Part of me wants one more child… eventually. Part of me thinks that other part is bananas. Do I not have enough on my plate raising 3 children under 5 while simultaneously pumping to feed another’s baby? Is the prospect of potentially filling out a set of fleecy footie pajamas one last time so compelling that it’s worth all of the added time, stress, money (and pregnancy)?

I don’t know. But it’s sad to pack these items away not knowing if I’ll ever feel them close to me again, filled and stretched by the warm girth of my chubby baby. Infancy, babyhood, toddlerhhood, tucked away in storage bins. It never gets easier.