I didn’t need to take it out to know what it was. I recognized the small yellow box and clear plastic crumpled in the bathroom garbage can. It was the packaging for a yellow onesie. And I knew who put it there.
“Norrin what did you do with the yellow Dr. Seuss shirt?”
“I put it in the drawer.”
There it was in his drawer. I picked it up and held it with both hands as if the baby I bought it for was wearing it. I looked at it for a while wondering what to do. I folded it and placed in another drawer – a drawer filled with keepsakes.
“Oh! The Places You’ll Go!” was a book I loved as a child. And I fell in love again when I reread it while pregnant with Norrin. I’d sit in his room, rub my belly and read the book. I had all these hopes and dreams of the places my baby would go. I’d read it while he was baby – before he could understand the words.
When Norrin was diagnosed with autism, the book meant more to me than ever. Because while some dreams seemed to diminish, the hope was still there.
After Norrin’s diagnosis, I had no desire for another child. I had so much worry and doubt and completely overwhelmed by everything Norrin needed there was no room for a baby. I slowly began to get rid of things he had outgrown. Clothes, his crib, the high chair and play pens. I wasn’t going to hold on to anything because there wasn’t any need.
Related: I Never Wanted to Be a Mother
When I was pregnant for the second time I told myself I wasn’t going to go crazy buying cute clothes and toys. But when I saw the yellow Dr. Seuss onesie I couldn’t help myself. I knew I wanted to pass along my love of Dr. Seuss and our little motto.
And there was hope.
I had started to register for the baby shower, I announced to Facebook I was pregnant, I was looking forward to my next OBGYN visit so that I could learn the sex of my baby.
I was imagining all of the possibility of this new little life. I was starting over.
And then I lost the baby at 16 weeks. I deleted my registry, deactivated my Facebook page and hid my sonogram photo inside a book I knew I’d never read again.
I gave away the maternity clothes.
All that’s left to remind me of my second child is the little yellow onesie.
It’s been more than four years and I’m still holding on to it. It’s in a drawer in Norrin’s room. I’ve had friends and relatives have babies and I’ve thought of passing it along. But I can never seem to let it go.
I doubt I’ll ever have another child. I’ll probably never have a reason to use that little yellow onesie.
But the hope is still there. And that’s something I can never let go of.