Two days ago my husband and I have donated some baby clothes to a friend of ours who is expecting her baby by the end of this week, or the beginning of next week. My husband was the one to deliver the goods, as I stayed home with our ill baby.
My friend called me the following day and, for 18 minutes!!!, she couldn’t stop thanking me for all the beautiful stuff I have kept for her. I felt humbled by her gratitude and I kept saying that it was no big deal and that I hope she finds a good use of all that she got from us. And then, as if she knew that I don’t understand why she needs to thank me so much, she said: “No, you really must know that this is a Big Deal for me that you gave me all these amazing clothes, toys, and that baby chair! In our country, I had to buy absolutely everything for my first baby, and we spent a fortune back then. And here I am, expecting a girl, and you have a girl too, and you kept all these cute clothes, you washed them for me, you even ironed them! When did you have time to do that?! (She laughed here). And you arranged all of these in a tidy manner and you just had them delivered right to my door! And you know what else, I have this winter coat for boys to bring my girl home when we’re dismissed from the hospital, and I’ve been praying to find or have enough money to buy a coat for girls, and when I opened the boxes your husband brought, there was that bag with that beautiful pink-flowery coat which I so much hoped to get! My prayers were answered in a big way, and it’s just huge! I couldn’t keep myself from going through all the clothes that night, so I started arranging them into the closet for when my baby arrives, but before that, my husband was hysterical of how many clothes there were on our bed, so he took out his phone and took a picture of me among the piles of bodies, dresses, pants and sweaters. If up until now I was waiting for the day I will deliver my girl, now, I just can’t wait for her to arrive so that I can dress her in all these outfits and take her out for walks! (She laughed again, even harder). I can’t express how grateful and happy I am that you gave me all these!”
I honestly couldn’t stop her from talking. Not because I couldn’t just interrupt her, but because I felt so much happiness and so much love for having made another human being happy and hopeful. I didn’t even think my two boxes of clothes, one bag of toys and a cosy baby-chair could make such an impact upon an expecting mommy! I didn’t know the story behind her life experience and I really didn’t give too much of a thought about what would happen after I give her all that.
Another thing that made me appreciate what I have is her following phrase:
“I don’t have a washing machine at home and I used to wash small things by hand, or I would just do laundry out once a week. I was thinking about what I would do about this issue once the baby arrived, but after seeing the quantity of clothes lying on my bed, I was like “No way I need to do laundry for 2 weeks here, and I still wouldn’t run out of clothes”, hahhahahahaaaa! Can you imagine?”
I didn’t know she doesn’t have a washing machine. I literally felt like crying!
In my opinion, women, mothers deserve all the credit there is in the world, all the love the universe can give, all the strength and happiness the humanity can give, and all the smiles a child can gift. I can’t express how humbled and down-on-my-knees I feel right now, and I just can’t tell you how much I respect and appreciate this friend of mine for having shared her story with me.
We’re both immigrants in a country we could only dream about living in. We both fight for our happiness and families here. We both struggle with the reality of a new arrival and the challenging days of motherhood. But we both stay positive and hopeful that one day things will be easier in our lives. And I believe this is what life is about.