My mom, who had three kids, has a floral satchel that is full of our lost teeth and locks of hair from haircuts we had over 30 years ago. Yes, really.
It may seem like something only a serial killer would collect, but ask any mom and they will tell you about their own weird collection they can’t let go of.
Why We Do It
When it comes to my kids, there’s a lot I can’t seem to part with, but am otherwise extremely unsentimental about clutter. Like my own mom, also have a creepy collection of my son’s baby teeth. I keep it in a jar in the kitchen, and I have curly locks from first haircuts lovingly tucked away in photo albums.
I still have a positive pregnancy test somewhere in the abyss under my bathroom sink. Newborn clothes also have a special place in my heart (and closet).
So, what’s the deal? What use do newborn clothes have sitting wasted in a cupboard when someone else could use them? Why can’t we let go of teeth and hair?
Maybe we want to capture a feeling that only very specific moments in life can offer. Or, maybe we just want a keepsake for a job well done. After all, bringing children into the world and raising them is hard work.
Whatever the case, it probably seems really weird to other people.
Welcome to motherhood, where you can’t please everyone, and body parts in the cupboard and pee-covered plastic sticks under the bathroom sink are just par for the course.
Here are some of the stranger things moms keep.
“Welcome to motherhood, where you can’t please everyone, and body parts in the cupboard and pee-covered plastic sticks under the bathroom sink are just par for the course.”
We’ve all heard of placenta encapsulation, but there are other ways to preserve your placenta or make a place for it at home too.
“I had a home birth and requested to keep my placenta,” says Geetha, from Ontario. “We stored it in a sealed bag in our freezer. A couple weeks later, my husband, two young children and I placed our placenta in a hole in the corner of our yard. In that exact spot, we planted an Ivory Silk Lilac tree. To say the tree has flourished is an understatement. It has grown faster than older trees in our yard. It is a daily reminder that life is indeed a gift. That body of mine is responsible for three children and a tree!”
#2. Poop Particle
It’s not uncommon for kids, while playing with Lego or money, to put it in their mouths. Sometimes that means dimes or pennies get swallowed (and then have to get pooped out).
But Ontario couple Rachael and Tim were especially shocked when their five-year-old daughter swallowed a quarter. After a visit to the ER to confirm that it wasn’t lodged in her body, they patiently waited for the quarter to pass through into her poop.
Tim then took it a step further: He washed it and framed it in their bathroom as a testament to a job well done.
#3 Breast Milk
As previously mentioned, I have a bunch of baby teeth and locks of hair saved (like mother, like daughter I guess). But after seven straight years of breastfeeding three kids for a couple of years each, I’m also planning to preserve a few drops of my milk in a ring (look it up, it’ very cool!) before weaning my youngest child.
It’s been such an incredible and special time, and I know I’ll miss it. But it came with lots of struggles too, and I want to honor that.
#4 Umbilical Cords, Positive Pregnancy Tests (and More Breast Milk)
What else do moms keep? Turns out, a whole lot of other body parts…and fluids.
“I have my son’s umbilical cord, dried and coiled into a spiral, as well as every positive pregnancy test I took, some baby teeth (one’s in my wallet for some reason) and, in the very back of my freezer, one last bag of breastmilk I can’t bear to toss (it’s 10 years old).”—Nicole Bross, Alberta
“My mom kept all of her three kids’ umbilical cord scabs. They’re taped in an envelope into our baby books. Mine has the most details, being the firstborn and favorite (LOL), of course. She kept all our teeth, too.”—Anonymous (I’m sorry, but I can’t expose my mom’s oddity to the world with name and location)
#5 & 6 Teeth and Hair
“I just have teeth. I did have an envelope of hair from [my child’s] first haircut but I have no idea where it is. I remember being fascinated by the lock of my own baby hair that my mother kept. I also have [my kids’] hospital bracelets. When I was born (which is a long time ago) real bracelets with beads that spelled out our names were used. My mother kept those bracelets and I was very fascinated with that as well.”—Sue, Ontario
While it may seem strange to hang on to such unusual keepsakes, the truth is that sometimes it feels even weirder to throw these things away.
So tell us, mamas: Do you keep anything weird or unusual? Let us know!
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