Thursday, January 15, 2015

Laundy! Laundry! Oh, the laundry.

"I feel like I never get caught up on laundry.  The basket of dirty clothes seem endless!"

All too well I remember these daily feelings from years past and I'm sure they are said a million times a day by busy parents and caregivers not only trying to stay ahead but sometimes just trying to catch up!

Perhaps before one goes too far with their complaints let me tell you about some laundry I have put off...for 2 and a half years now.

There was always the question of what to do with Noah's material things that, just like they say, he couldn't take to heaven with him.  Some have been brought back to our house. Some have been given to a few close and special friends. Some have been donated. And some remained in boxes.

Until now.

Last year it felt like the time to start on a blanket of his t-shirts, a gesture that had been offered to me a few months after Noah died.  It always stayed in the back of my mind but it seemed so daunting to actually go through clothes that would bring back so many memories of a boy who wasn't here anymore. Not only did I not want to see them I couldn't imagine actually having to pick favorites. They were all now my favorites. Everything of his has become my favorite.

Then there was the task of washing them. A task I took for granted with him for 10 years. The simple act of washing, folding and hanging his clothes. But this time...they wouldn't need putting away in anticipation for him.

I actually made the decision last year to go through his clothes but it took the boxes 4 months to move from storage to my car to my garage to my living room. Emotionally I would say this has been one of the hardest parts of his death for me to face.

There is such a finality in washing his clothes for the very last time despite being able to briefly enjoy seeing his things hung up with ours once again.

Friends, don't take the little things you "have to do" get to do for those you love for granted.  That task may not be available for you to do tomorrow.

The only way I could stay focused on getting through Noah's last loads of laundry was to pray my way through it (and have Friends playing on Netflix in the background.) What peace that brought me. If you find yourself dreading a task such as laundry try praying through it. Pray for yourself. Pray for who you are bestowing your gift upon. Pray that your eyes will be open to others that you can help.

And, most importantly, thank the One who (like a dirty load of laundry) can pick us up, sort us out and wash us clean.