When I became a parent, I thought new equated to better. Friends with toddlers graciously passed along gently used baby clothes that I folded and tucked away in the back of a drawer. Only new clothes for my darling, I’d think. Only the best.
Ah, how things change. Nowadays, I’m happy if the clothes my boys pull on in the morning are clean. Stain-free and rip-free? Be still my beating heart.
I’d like to say I wised up to the lesson that kids thrive with the basics: food, clothing, shelter, and love. The truth? I was worn out and keeping it simple keeps me sane. (It takes a lot of effort to keep kids clean and well versed in Chinese flashcards.)
With my baby in the first grade, it’s been years since I’ve purchased any baby items. But it looks like the trends continue. Everything’s bigger, better, brighter.
I tell you all this only to give context to what I see tonight. We’re out celebrating the season when I hear a grandparent struggling with the max daddy of all strollers. It is the newest, fangliest model with everything by the looks of it but a landing pad.
Which is wonderful except when there isn’t a ramp but a flight of stairs separating you from the rest of the fun.
“May I help you?” I ask. Without waiting for a reply, I gently lift the front wheels while the grandmother steadies the stroller handle. Together we walk the stroller down the stairs to the ground below. I give a quick wave and jog up to join my family.
Here’s the truth: We all need a little help. Accepting help isn’t a sign of weakness but instead a sign of strength. When someone accepts help, he’s strong enough to know that he can’t always be everything to everyone.
Another truth? Those new strollers are very, very heavy.