This morning when I opened our apartment door to go to Mass we could barely get out because there were two large white garbage bags blocking our way. Peering through the thin plastic I could see that there were little boy clothes and shoes inside. More money saved at the hands of our generous neighboors -hooray! Then, after Mass concluded, a mother of eight children approached our family and handed my excited three-year-old a smaller plastic bag which contained a (better-than-the-ill-fitting-one-he-has-at-home) Spiderman mask as well as a Robin costume. Superhero capes in our household have an average lifespan of 2.5 months, so, again, this gift was received with gratitude on my part.
As a mid-ranking military family, we live amidst families of similar age and health, however, we are the beneficiaries of a disproportionate amount of hand-me-down clothing. I was reflecting recently upon what this said about us. Well, two things. It says that we are humble enough to accept these gifts and then dress our children in them. And, secondly, it says that we are the ones who are going to be expanding our family. I am happy that those around us can observe these qualities in our family of five. I hope to always be the family who will take your hand-me-downs when you have decided not to have any more children, because I am not going to make that decision any time soon.