Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Things Change

I wanted dark wood.

The walls were light green with white wainscoting and I thought dark wood furniture would make the room feel more grounded. Modern. Just right for my baby boy.

A couple years later, dark finishes would be everywhere, but at the time blond wood was the fashion. I found a crib with an espresso finish, but couldn't find a dresser that was just right: big enough and not too tall so it could double as a changing table.

We found an unfinished dresser. The dresser, in itself, was nothing special. Pine. Simple. But the work we put into it was the very definition of a labor of love.

Jeff stained it to match the crib. I added jungle animal drawer knobs, lined the bottom with shelf paper and filled the drawers with baby clothes.

The top right drawer held diapers. Socks in the middle drawer. Jammies on the left.

As Moe grew, the contents evolved. The bottom drawer had to give up its blankets to make room for shorts and swimsuits. Jeans and t-shirts replaced onesies.

Other things changed. Chewies and sensory items, stretchy vests and a bright green body sock found their home in the top left drawer. Some things stayed the same. Diapers, replaced by pull-ups but diapers nonetheless, remained in the top right drawer.

Last weekend, we had to donate the dresser. Moe had been sleeping in a bed tent, and after a year or so of being climbed on, one of the poles broke. The tents are on back order and we needed a change. So we took down the tent, and to keep Moe safe we took all the other furniture too. The toy chest went to his sister's room. The swing and his little work table can be relocated every night. But there was no place to put the dresser. It had to go.

Jeff brought the dresser to Goodwill. They almost didn't take it at first, but thankfully they did. I busied myself fighting holiday traffic (already!) to get a set of drawers that would fit in Moe's closet. It was the right thing, the safe decision.

The next day I had another donation to make, this time of outgrown clothes that I had collected emptying the drawers. I drove back to Goodwill, and I couldn't help myself. I went inside.

And there it sat. My dresser. I tightened the drawer knob that always came loose. I knew it was just a thing. But that thing had seen us through a journey. A journey that began with hopes and dreams and the cutest little baby you've ever seen. And just as those hopes and dreams have had to be adjusted since Moe's (still the cutest boy you've ever seen) diagnosis, some practical things have had to be adjusted too.

Waiting to be purchased

Even so, I cried on the way home.

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You can read more about Moe and his family's journey with autism at Jen's personal blog, Anybody Want A Peanut? 

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