Just An Old Pink Sweatshirt 5/7/15

It’s just an old pink sweatshirt.  Mama bought it over 15 years ago when we were out on one of our weekly shopping trips.  Over the years she found she loved the “Hanes Her Way” brand from WalMart and had them in all the pastel colors, with pink being her favorite.  She loved the softness of the cloth – even before they’d been washed and dried 100 times.  She loved the way they fit – loose and comfortable. She loved the warmth of slipping them on when the air turned chilly in the fall, or even over a summer shirt when she planned to eat out in an air conditioned restaurant in the summer.  “You know it’s going to be cold in there, Brenda.  I’ll need my sweatshirt.”

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Mama’s been gone nearly nine years now, and even though I think about her every day, it’s on the special days – like her birthday or this Sunday on Mother’s Day – that the memories come back full force, and I allow my mind to travel back to when she was still here, and I could physically touch her.

There’s nothing more comforting than being held in your mother’s arms.  Mama held me as a baby and as a small child, but I have no real memories of those times.  It’s the times she held me as an adult – whether happily when she’d greet me, or tightly when I was sure my world was falling apart – that I remember and cherish.  As long as she lived I knew there was one earthly person who loved me unconditionally.  No matter how bad I messed up, or how many tears I caused – I knew she’d never, ever not love me.

It’s hard to lose that comfort.

Months after Mama died, as I was going through her closets, I pulled out a few things to save.  With me at 5’7′ and Mama at 5′ even, we very seldom could wear each other’s clothes.  Nevertheless, I saved her Christmas sweaters (every tacky one of them, and I wear one each Christmas), a short housedress (I’ve never had it on, but it was so “Mama” I couldn’t let it go), and one of her Hanes For Her sweatshirts – the pink one.

I wear that pink sweatshirt a lot in the fall and winter.  Mama was right – it’s very soft and comfortable.  But that’s not why I wear it.  When I slip it over my head and put my arms through the sleeves, I can almost feel her arms wrapping around me.  I can almost feel her hands patting my back and hear her whispering in my ear, “I love you, Brenda.”  And that’s almost as good as the real thing.

When I get up on Mother’s Day this Sunday I’ll put that sweatshirt on over my pj’s.  Then I’ll pour a cup of coffee and go sit out on the balcony.  And for just a few moments I’ll pretend she’s sitting in the chair next to me – just the two of us – Mama and me. 

And I’ll feel unconditionally loved. 

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God bless.

31 thoughts on “Just An Old Pink Sweatshirt 5/7/15

  1. Awwww….I believe she is still loving you unconditionally. And will forever. She looks something like my own mom who is gone 11 years this next July. It’s hard, isn’t it. Still weren’t we lucky to have them at all.

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    • No doubts at all, Dawn, that she and my daddy are happily awaiting me in Heaven. I am forever blessed to have had two such loving parents.

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      • And they were very blessed to have you for their daughter. I always loved Louise and Leonard and enjoyed visits and conversations with them. They were two very special people, and you are a beautiful blend of them both…love you friend💗

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  2. Amen! And my mom – almost 16 years and I think of her and feel her presence every day. I have a blue sweatshirt that my wonderful grandma Agnes wore, then my mom and now it hangs in my closet. And I think it’s a Hanes!

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  3. I have a fluffy blue bathrobe that my mom used to wear all the time. I still have it. Mom has been gone 43 years and I think about her often. Sunday will be a special day to remember her……and I will!

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  4. A pink sweatshirt may have been the prop, but the tribute was so much more. My Mama has been gone 31 1/2 years and almost every day I think ” If I could just ask Mama.” Isn’t it something? Our parents are our parents until the day we (not they) die. I guess that’s the way it’s supposed to be.

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  5. Those of us who are lucky enough to know how you feel, are very lucky, indeed. Happy Mother’s Day to us all, and to our Moms. Now I have to go find the blouse I kept. . . .

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  6. Beautiful Brenda. Happy Mother’s Day to you and to all the special moms both here and those who are no longer with us. Love you mom.

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  7. I bet she’s looking down and thinking how lovely that pink sweatshirt looks on you! Hope all the mothers have a great day. I hope my dog gets me a nice card or something!

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  8. Beautiful! Speaks straight to the heart. I have simple pieces of jewelry, wonderful old costume jewelry pins, a necklace or a ring of mom’s & nana’s I wear on the days I need them close. I would love a sweatshirt, so comforting.
    Thanks for sharing.

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  9. Beautifully written! My Mom has been gone just over two years now and I miss her every day too. How I wish I could call her just to hear her say everything will be okay. Happy Mothers Day to all!

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    • I know Jayne. When my mom said “Everything’s going to be ok”, the worries always seemed less worrisome. I sure miss that.

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  10. Just. Beautiful. I can feel your love. You are a blessed woman to have that overflowing love, today still, in your life.

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  11. How is it you make me feel I am part of your family? What an amazing gift you have! Your Mother showed you love, taught you appreciation and a deep commitment to family. I see two amazing women. Happy Mother’s Day!

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