Click here to find out.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Finding Comfort through an Article of Clothing

This submission comes from Anjeny @ Ramblings of an Islander. Today is her Mom's birthday so this submission is like a hug and a kiss for her.

LY Anjeny! Happy Birthday Anjeny's mom!!

I have been thinking about my mom a lot.

See, April of this year will mark the 2nd year anniversary of my mom’s passing. Last year around this time, I went back to Micronesia, my home island, to commemorate her first year anniversary and help my brothers finish whatever unfinished business my mom might have left behind.

I was going through her belongings to see what needed to be given away, thrown away or keep. I came upon an old skirt that my mom made for herself. My sister-in-law told me that was one of her favorite things to wear. I could tell from the way it looked. It looked like it’s seen better days. One look at the skirt and I knew I had to keep it. It reminded me of one that my mom used to have when I was a little girl growing up.

I took the skirt back with me when I returned to Hawaii.

This is where my story begins . . .

Back when I was a little girl, around the age of five or so, my mom was the most important person in my life. To me, no one else compared to my mom. She was beautiful and very talented in any creative home making skill. She loved her family more than life itself and she was constantly making sacrifices for them. The list goes on and on.

She was an amazing seamstress, she could sew anything. I remember when we would go shopping and she’d see a beautiful dress on display that was over her budget to buy. She would walk around the dress, studying it from top to bottom, check out the style, then she’d buy the fabric and material (which was a lot cheaper than the dress itself) and go home and make the same exact dress on her sewing machine. I’m sorry to say that I did not inherit that amazing talent from her, one of my biggest regrets.

You know how when you have a favorite shirt or an article of clothing you find yourself wearing it a lot more often than any other clothing you have? That’s how it was with my mom and her skirt. She made this skirt out of scraps left over from dresses she would make to sell to people and she loved it so much that she wore it a lot.

In my culture, whenever a boy decides he wants to marry a girl, his whole family (parents, grandparents, uncles and aunts) have to go with him to ask the girl’s parents’ permission to marry their daughter.

One of my brothers fell for a girl from another island so my mom had to go with him to get his future bride to be. That was the most devastating and saddest time of my life. I have never been separated from my mom before and for her to leave the island like that, it was hell for a little girl like me back then. For some reason, my mom left her skirt behind. Since it was a skirt she wore so often, it even had her sweet smell of the perfume she wore . . . gardenia. I would cry myself to sleep every night missing my mom. The days were not so bad because I was always kept busy, but the night times were the worst because my mom would usually sing us a couple of songs to sleep or tell us bedtime stories.

You can guess where I turned for comfort. Yes, that skirt of hers. Some nights I would curl up with her skirt to sleep or other nights I would wear it over my clothes so I could bask in the smell of her and dream about her.

For the two weeks she was gone that was my source of comfort. Who would have thought that an article of clothing would be a good source of comfort for a little girl who was missing her mom who she had never been apart from?

That's why when I saw this skirt left in her belongings which happened to be her favorite one in her last living days, I was reminded of my childhood and I just had to have it. This skirt is little of what I have left of her and believe it or not, whenever I am missing my mom a lot I take out her skirt and remember all the different times things we’ve done together and I feel better.

It may sound crazy that I could actually look for comfort from an article of clothing but I don’t care. I hope that if ever my kids are separated from me and missing me that there would actually some visible evidence of something I own besides their memories of me that can bring them some small measure of comfort in their time of sadness.

By donating a piece of this skirt to The Magic Quilt, I feel like my mom's legacy will live on and bring comfort to others in need of comfort.

With that said, I want to tell everyone out there whose moms are still alive to make sure you let them know how much they mean to you and how much you love them.


Kritta22 said...

Oh that's beautiful! You make-a me-a cry! (I blubber when I cry.)

I feel so honored to be a part of this whole wonderful thing!

Thank you for sharing!

Sandi said...

Anjeny you are so darn adorable! I love your story and I love that beautiful bright skirt. So nice of you to donate a little part of it- I bet your mom would be so happy about that.

Anjeny said...

Aww, thanks Kritta. I am also honored to be part of this beautiful thing. And I just know the quilt is going to be absolutely fabulous.

Sandi, thank you for reading my story. I'm sure my mom is happy that I am putting her fav. skirt to good use and all for a great cause.

Crash, thank you so much for posting this story. And thank you for this wonderful quilt idea, I know the recipients are very grateful.

Heidi Ashworth said...

I love this story! Your mom sounds just fabulous (no doubt she still is up in heaven). I have an old ripped up nightgown of MY mom's (she's still alive, thank goodness!) but I don't know where it is or I would send a piece of that for the quilt. Just lovely!

Tammara, Jess and Cory said...

That is such a beautiful, heart warming tribute to your mother. You made me cry. What a great idea. I was close to my grandma and she passed away in 2006 when cleaning out her house I took all her aprons why not sure then but now they make a great curtain in my laundry room and I go there often when I am missing her.

Anjeny said...

Heidi and Tammara...thank you ladies for the sweet and kind comments. I do hope this story would be of some help to bring some comfort those those who read it.

SWIRL said...

Anjeny- such a beautiful post... that was so touching.. thanks for sharing...

Makes me want to call my mom and tell her I love her..