Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Letting Go

This weekend I gave away Leah's high chair. It was hard.

I'm a huge fan of Freecycle. If you aren't, you should be. So when we found out that Leah was on the way I started watching Freecycle for those baby essentials. Jeff and I were both still in grad school, and used but free sounded much better than full-price at Babies R' Us (aka the devil incarnate). The first thing I scored was a high chair from a lady down the street from us. Jeff and I had a lot of fun sliding that high chair down Sherman, laughing about how silly we must have looked.

Soon after our diagnosis was confirmed some friends of ours came and cleared out our baby stuff. They stuffed the dresser I had pulled from the alley and intended to re-stain and use as a changing table (Jeff is good like that), the baby swing, and some other miscellaneous stuff. I don't even know what it all was anymore, I was just so thankful to see it go, and to not have to do the work myself. But, I kept the high chair. I couldn't give it up. It felt like giving it up was like admitting that I would never need a high chair because I would never have a baby.

We lived in a one-bedroom apartment, and didn't have a ton of space. Most of the time that high chair sat in our room. I saw it every morning, and every evening. As hard as it was to see, I couldn't let it go. It ended up turning into a place to stack junk, and it stopped looking so much like a high chair. That wasn't so bad.
Then came Tommy.

He used that high chair. He ate and explosively pooped in it three times a day. I washed that cover a million times. I spent so much time disinfecting it. But, he loved it. It held him in place while he did his favorite thing in the world-eat. He looked so cute exuberantly pounding on that tray with his little plastic spoons. My baby enjoyed it. It served its purpose.

When we moved the high chair came with, as Tommy was still using it up until we left Evanston. But, our new kitchen was far too small to accommodate it, so Tommy transitioned to a booster chair. It was time anyway.

The high chair went into our little storage unit. A storage unit I need for other things, because, our new apartment is pretty small and so are the closets. The high chair wasn't getting any smaller in storage, and so when I heard that Jeff's boss just had a baby, I asked Jeff to find out if he needed a high chair. He did.

As anxious as I was for that space, I have to say that when Jeff got out the high chair to dust off and get ready for transfer, it made me sad. It had been so long since I had seen it, and for all that time while we were grieving and working on the adoption it had been my odd symbol of hope. The big hunk of plastic that reminded me what I longed for and what I was working towards, why I was getting up every morning.

I cried a little. It surprised me. But, it was good to let it go.

Good-bye symbol. I don't need you anymore. I have the real thing.


Cheryl said...

praying, Amy....Tommy is so beautiful...

Chelsea Lee said...

i love you. that's all.