Being the oldest of three children I did not have to wear hand-me-downs…but with some of the clothes my mother bought me I was not happy. On the other hand (body), she sewed me a pretty light blue checked gingham dress vaguely remembered. And it was not until I was in my fifties that I truly valued the dark brown sweater she knitted me while I was in high school. Our relationship had been darkly contentious unlike my relationship with my two daughters.
Yes, my oldest daughter, Erin, and I had our moments, but she had been planned, wanted, unlike my mother not wanting or planning me. Still, I have been surprised when Erin wanted to wear my clothes as she grew to be as tall as me, while more beautiful than me. Her high school graduation 8×10 framed photo still stands on my living room table (along with her younger sister Megan’s and stepdaughter Sara’s), where she chose to wear my purple (tears) gauzy top accented by my silver loop earrings. Not for a lack of clothes in her own closet either.
My granddaughter Denali, has followed in her mother’s clothes-steps as she grew older, asking to not only wear but to keep my T-shirts, one of which she chooses to wear to the extended family Thanksgiving get together in 2012. Hand-me-ups; I smile! She also wears and now owns my shorts, sundresses, etc. and this summer (tears) she buys me a moo-moo while traveling in Kenya, as well as one for herself, only in a different color.
Why is it that tears push into my vision as I type? Am I the girl who never dreamed to wear my mother’s clothes? Am I the girl under the moo-moo, crying in the hope I am close to finding her? Is it the closeness that she lost with her mother? Her tears know of the lost love now felt on my back as I try to slip on the plenty-tall and plenty-wide moo-moo, but the hole for my head is too small.