Wednesday, February 25, 2009

the thing about time

Gray is in high school, so, not surprisingly, we have almost none of his baby things left. In fact, I thought we had nothing at all, until this week, when, while scouring the cellar for supplies to use in various minor redecorating and renovation projects, I found a plastic bin of tiny clothes.

Most of the clothes brought back no memories, but there was one red outfit that I remembered vividly. Although Gray was born at full term, he did a short stint in the NICU, and was not quite five pounds when we brought him home. I remember clumsily putting him into the red suit, then bursting into tears because, even rolled up, the sleeves hung down so far that I couldn't find his hands.

My mother, who was staying with us, made an immediate and expensive taxi trip all the way to the suburbs and came back with a bag of clothes, doll-sized, made specially for preemies.

Today, I washed the red outfit and brought it up to the nursery. My fingers fumbled in the same, suddenly familiar way with the snaps, which fasten in the opposite direction of every other piece of baby clothing I've ever seen, but I finally got Cole into it.

He had outgrown it already.

20 comments:

Kymberli said...

The thing about time is that when you're not paying attention to it, it goes by much too fast.

slouching mom said...

Yep. And here's something else: when you have two of the same gender, you're fooled into thinking that you've got the clothes thing covered.

But my second child is wide where my first was narrow and narrow where my first was wide; he's short where my first was long and long where my first was short.

OH WELL.

Bon said...

sometimes touching old things is like looking through windows into other lives we used to live and for a second the familiarity makes it feel like yesterday.

and then...well, you ended it perfectly.

Magpie said...

he's doing well then, huh?

debbie said...

see, after yesterday's post, it appears that I want pictures of every single Cole related post. Can't we get a visual?

niobe said...

Magpie: very, very well.

Debbie: Ummm....I'm still mulling over the comments from yesterday, trying to decide what I should do about photos. Though I will tell you that, though the rest of the story is true, the suit wasn't actually red. ; )

Wordgirl said...

Really Niobe, he's so beautiful.

Xo

Pam

CLC said...

Wow, what a trip down memory lane for you. I am glad he is doing well. Yesterday's photo was gorgeous.

Cara said...

Niobe - he's just amazing. Growing, changing - don't you just wish the other thing about time is you could hit the pause button?

Kristin said...

What a beautiful boy. It's amazing the memories a set of clothes bring back.

Monica H said...

What a beautiful memory and a healthy baby.

thordora said...

Nothing ever does what we want does it?

Somedays, I kinda like that.

THe girls think your son is quite lovely btw. :)

debbie said...

well, that actually makes me feel better. There was something about those cute little snaps on a red outfit that had me dying to see it. Maybe b/c it sounded like he'd like like a cute little Christmas gift. (Yes, I know Cole will not celebrate Xmas, neither do I, but I still like little presents wrapped up in red).

Furrow said...

When I put away Zora's first set of baby clothes, I wasn't exactly sad, but I was anticipating a future sadness. I don't know why. Her whole infancy was like that. The sense that every moment was precious and fleeting was such a burden. Having a busy toddler has helped me put aside sentimentality. I like it that way.

I'm very happy to hear of a time when your mother was actually there for you.

leanne said...

I am immensely amused that the real suit isn’t even red. Of all the details to change... And like Furrow I was also touched by your mom’s response. But mostly I keep thinking about the passage of time... how inevitably it seems to do the exact opposite of what you want (or at least what I want) and how I can simultaneously want life to speed up and slow down.

Ahuva Batya said...

I was also quite struck/touched by the image of your mother rushing over in a taxi.

No two children are the same, so it seems fitting (or not, get it? Oh, I slay me) that they can't always step into each others' clothes, literally or figuratively.

niobe said...

Ahuva Batya: That's what I was trying to say. Exactly.

Julia said...

There are a couple of little things of Monkey's that the Cub can wear, and she is immensely delighted whenever he does. But your larger point stands, and for me is underscored even by the outfits that fit. Just never exactly the same...

Carly Marie said...

This story made me smile :) My daughter had astay in the NICU even though she was full term. The very same thing happened when I went to put on one of her outfits on River.

I felt like I just read my own memory.

Your little boy is a sweet :)

painted maypole said...

i know things aren't great with your mom, but that is a really sweet memory