Welcome Sarah, today’s writer in the Thursday “I’m Not a Bad Mom” Series. If you’d like to contribute as a guest writer for this series please see details here.
I was about 30 years old when my mother gave me a shoe box. This shoe box was filled to the brim with things I had drawn when I was younger, written in school, ribbons and awards, first clip of hair, first tooth lost, and countless other things.
For her, this box was filled with cherished items, memories of the years she spent raising me. For me, it was a box of junk. I’m sorry, it probably sounds worse than what it really is but she remembers this stuff, I don’t!
I don’t remember my first haircut, I remember my worst. I had hair down to my waistband and the hairdresser chopped it off to just below my ears. I cried for days.
I don’t remember losing my first tooth, but I do remember wearing braces… twice in my lifetime. (and my bottom teeth are still crooked but I’m thankful I no longer have an overbite.)
This box was filled with little trinkets from my past but they were pointless for me, yet at one time they meant the world to my mom.
The day she gave me this box of treasures, I sat there, before opening it and thought, “Am I a bad parent for not having a box for my kids? I don’t even have a baby book for my kids!”
But once I opened that box and saw the contents, I knew that I am not a bad parent, I’m not even a bad child to a well-meaning parent. These sentiments are my mothers, not mine. These are her memories of me, not mine of me and not mine of her. This box is my mother’s box.
There is only 1 item that I have kept of all of my children’s stuff. That is the outfit they came home from the hospital in. I have plans for these outfits. These outfits will be cut into squares and turned into a blanket/quilt for when my children bring over their children. I will cuddle these grandbabies in a quilt made with my memories from their parent’s first trip “home”.
Apologies to my children, you will not have a box. Instead, you will have my undying love for you for the rest of my life, you will have my attention when I could had been writing in a baby book. You will have your own memories of me and I of you. The box I keep for you, it is in my heart, sewn into my soul, and remembered daily in my mind.
Nestled between two cornfields in Indiana sits a house with Blue Shutters (which happens to be the name of her blog). Inside Sarah plays the roles of wife, mother of 3, homeschooler, freelance writer, cook, and many other hats as well. You can find Sarah on Facebook and Pinterest.