There are things that represent certain chapters in our lives. Your child’s old clothes represent a special season of your life. You were able to overcome new challenges. You were where you were most needed, and tender memories were created.
However, hanging on too much to the past can be unhealthy. Instead of focusing on yesteryears, be excited for what the future will bring for you and your family. One way to do that is to let go of old, memory-filled clothes from your child’s early years.
Why letting go is difficult
Not all decluttering leaves you with a “good riddance” feeling. Some are more difficult than others and letting go of your child’s old clothes is, hands down, one of them.
That blanket he was wrapped in from the hospital, that elephant print onesie he was wearing when he first said “mommy,” and that robot pajama he didn’t want to take off even when the family needed to go out for church—they all remind you of something worth cherishing. Bet you can even remember exactly how he smelled in those garments.
Almost everything in your child’s wardrobe carries a special memory. This is the very reason why it’s never easy to part ways with these material objects because they are no longer simply objects to you.
Keeping mementos is perfectly normal but you must remember that you can’t keep them forever. Select a few ones, take lots of pictures of the rest,and let go. You may lose the physical symbolisms but you will always have the memories safe in your heart.
When to let go
There are several things to consider when letting go of your child’s old clothes. It’s time to eliminate clothes when they no longer fit, they are no longer in good condition, or it’s something your child can never wear because he’s allergic to the fabric. More importantly, you need to purge old baby or kiddie clothes when they’re taking up so much space.
Select just a few pieces that are really dear to you and your child, keep them in a secured and labeled container. You can also be creative in keeping these pieces by turning them into a framed collage or making a memory quilt out of them.
For items that you must disregard, consider donating them to charity where they can be of good use. You can also sell the clothes online. A lot of new parents prefer pre-loved baby clothes since it means not spending too much on items that can only be worn for a short period. It’s a win-win.
How to go about it
The moment you decide to finally clean-up the memory closet, be firm about it. You might think that you may have another child whom you can hand down the clothes to or that your child might look for them one day. Sometimes we even think that our future grandchildren might even get to wear them. These scenarios may not always be the case.
Saving hand-me-downs for another baby in the near future is fine, as long as you keep it to a minimal. Your child may not be as sentimental about his things as you are so get his thoughts on which items to keep.
Finally, your future grandchild may not be as enthusiastic about getting decades old clothing. Keep a piece or two if you really must, but let go of the rest. You will feel a lot better when you see a more organized storage space.