When things disappear

My heart sank. The perfume I had used for so many years wasn’t on the shelf –in any form.  I studied the display for anything, even body wash would be better than nothing. But, no, it wasn’t there. I hesitantly approached the clerk, hoping she’d say they were simply out of stock.

Of course, that wasn’t what she said.

“I’m sorry, but they have discontinued that scent.”

Of course, they have.

I am not a real “perfume” type of gal so it had taken me a long time to find just the right scent that both my husband and I liked. I spent the next half hour trying to find another one. With no luck, whatsoever.

I went back a different day a few weeks later and tried again. I settled for one (that I ended up taking back), tried another one (which I used for awhile, but just couldn’t get used to), and finally am using one that’s just okay. But it’s not the same.

Meanwhile, on my shelf are my half-finished bottles of my favorite scent. I am afraid to use them, because I don’t want to use the last drop.

But if I don’t use them, I will never use the last drop.  Instead, they will start to get that funny, strong smell and become unusable.

OKAY, so who cares?

Well, when we were hunting for the Christmas tree, my mind became a bit nostalgic. It’s just not the same as when the kids were small. Now, they are so big and none of them really care all that much. We still all go together (for which I am very grateful), but the excitement of having Christmas with little ones has disappeared.

Now we have Christmas with young adults. And I have been quietly mourning, carefully keeping the last vestiges of childhood around the house. The only plan I ever had for my life was to be a mom. I enjoy it tremendously. But my “Mom”  job description has been changing quite dramatically these last few years.

The other day, I decided it is finally time to get rid of some of the toys! So, I dragged my girls down to the basement and we started sorting. Oh, the memories that came flooding back. Going through bins of dolls and barbies and trucks and games and books. The picture books especially made me sad. I loved reading to my kids. No one in my house needs me to read to them anymore.

My mind went back to the perfume.  I could keep it in a bottle forever or I could use it. Those were my only two choices.

My mind came back to the toys. I could keep them all here, lonely and unused in the basement or I could give them away so they would have a new home (memories of Toy Story 3 are coming back here– no wonder I cried at that movie!) Those are my two choices.

But no matter what I choose to do, the scent I loved is never coming back on the shelves. No matter what choice I make, my little kids are gone forever.  And while I may never be able to find another scent that I love as much as that first one, the young adults that have replaced my little kids are amazing!  I feel so honored to be the mother of these young people who love the Lord and desire to please Him with their lives.

We haven’t finished the toys yet, but I am going to be getting rid of quite a bit. Oh, I will keep a few for the grandchildren that hopefully will be along someday. But it is time to face the fact that my “small children” days are over and clear things out of here.

Meanwhile, I am going to choose to be grateful for right NOW.  I have so much for which to be thankful –not only for the special and wonderful family memories I already have but also for the memories we are making right now.  I am blessed.

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13 thoughts on “When things disappear

  1. Thank you for this post today! My children are still in the “small-ish” stage, and posts like yours help reinforce my need to ENJOY NOW.

    • Thank you! Yes, enjoying now is SO important — especially in those days of small children. I remember how frustrating they could be! And, long, too! Each stage has its blessings and hard times. I guess it’s all about what attitude we bring to it :)

  2. Oh be sure to keep many of the toys b/c the children of tomorrow will have much different toys (electronic, etc.) and the wonderful “oldies” (Little Engine That Could, marble rollers) just to name a few will be gone to your grandchildren. They are the ones that give hours of enjoyment and you can interact with them.
    You are so right, seasons change! But the secret is in the perspective. My anticipation of grandparenting was such a joy but I had no idea how great it would be and how quickly that part of “playing with them” would be over.
    Thanks again Leslie“job well done!

  3. I have been where you are both with children and with perfume!! Each age and stage has its own pleasures and joys, as you know. And as you have discovered, that is the key to accepting that life goes on! I cannot describe to you the delight at reveling in children who become adults you enjoy (I did NOT enjoy the teen years, however, so it was difficult to see that I would like them again!). Ours are no longer at home (and neither are most of their toys!) I miss them, but love having who they are now come home to visit often. BONUS! My husband and I are rediscovering each other and our home, and enjoying both more.

    As for the perfume, I have had success with googling the perfume name and locating those who still sell it, perhaps you can do the same, and extend the time you have with your favorite scent while you search for a replacement! I purchased online and plan to continue to do that until it truly is unavailable any longer!

    • Thank you so much for that suggestion :) And, yes, my husband and I are looking very much forward to rediscovering each other. In fact, we just mentioned that the other night :) Thanks for reading!

  4. Wonderful again, this brought me to tears and is a good reminder for me to enjoy this time. I am already mourning my “babies” and the fact that we did not have one more. Thank you for this!

  5. There with you Leslie, well kinda!! Ashley about to turn 20, Emily about to turn 17, and Jaislie about to turn 9 <—- ! You could have a surprise baby like we did! :O LOL

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