Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Slipping in Memories

Mom and Dad, Chris and Jerry.
If you look closely . . .
What articles of clothing do you treasure?
Get foolishly sentimental (ie. I’m never washing this!) over.
And why?
That jacket you bought that Peter Tork sneezed on when you went to that amazing concert back in ’66?
The red dress that was so eye-popping and perfect at the Christmas dance in ’80?
Those jeans that flattered so well and, even as they became more and more ragged, continued to be your best and truest friends from ’78 through to ‘92?
Those boots that were sooo warm and sooo comfortable that you wept when the sole ripped right out of the left one?
That slip.
Slip?
Ummm . . . Maybe I should explain . . .
My Mom was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in the 1985 at the age of 61.
It is a horrifying, wasting sort of illness.
For several years, she gamely battled it, exercising, proper diet.
Medications.
But the disease won and she passed into eternity on April 9, 2002.
We were happy for her – she had been so ill.
But sad for the rest of us.
In the months after her death, Dad found homes for her jewellery, clothes and keepsakes.
Each of her three daughters carted home boxes of Mom’s ‘stuff’.
Special because it had been hers.
I had great fun going through my boxes.
Immersing myself in the memories.
I put jewellery into my own case, remembering special pieces Mom had worn.
Set fancy, fun hats on the shelf in the closet, thinking about the times I had sneaked into her closet to play dress-up with them.
Hung up dresses and other clothes. More memories.
And went back to my normal life.
Then, Sunday rolled around.
I should point out here that we dress in our best for Sunday worship services.
It’s just our way . . .
I scrambled through my closet for a slip and grabbed the first one I came to. One of my Mom's.
I slipped it on.
And was immediately immersed in the soft scent of Mom’s ‘special occasion’ perfume.
I had forgotten.
Mom had been ill for so long, and, in all that time, had worn no perfume at all.
Suddenly, I was lost in memories.
Mom hugging me before she and Dad went out somewhere special.
Mom sitting beside me in Church.
Mom smiling across from me in a restaurant.
And thousands and thousands more.
It took me a long time to get ready that day.
Stepping from the softly-lit past into the garishly -coloured present took great effort.
After church, I hung the slip up carefully.
Almost reverently.
And vowed never to wash it again.

10 comments:

  1. I’m not there, yet. But, I imagine this will be how I’ll feel with my mom. Embracing these treasured times now.

    ReplyDelete
  2. You took me back to my memories. I have my mom’s bathrobe and I wear it often in the winter. It comforts me. It has been washed, though, many, many times, but I can still feel enveloped in her arms.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I live surrounded by physical memories of my parents.....it's wonderful and it's hard all at the same time. Shoot...now I can barely see to type.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I've never had any clothes that held the scent of perfume. I don't wear perfume myself, but even going through my mother's things, nothing was perfumed. And none of it fit me either, so the local Goodwill store got everything.
    I remember very well my favourite jeans though. I still have them. At least I have what's left of them, raggedy short shorts that I only wear inside the house in summer.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Such a precious memory. Am I right in thinking a few tears were shed?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Scents can bring back memory that is starling and real. Lovely words about your mother. I wrote about some of the clothing from my past life--it's in my novel. Not sure it will stay, but it was fun remembering.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I had to deal with all of my father's things as my parents are divorced and my only sibling lives too far away to help. I was okay with getting rid of almost everything. But he had a pair of hand knit wool socks he wore in bed at night. In fact, it was usually me who put them on his feet, because the caregivers couldn't seem to remember. Those socks - I just can't pass them on, at least not yet. Maybe never.

    And, like EC, I suspect there were a few tears on your part when you caught a whiff of your mom's perfume.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Beautifully written! I love the reverence with which you speak of your mom. That precious slip. Do they even get worn anymore? I too, remember my mom's slips that she wore to church. some were more pretty than others, with their lace trimming and carefully sewn darts. It's funny isn't it? the things that we hold dear, because of the memories they hold......

    ReplyDelete
  9. So sweet, Diane, and I love those things that remind us of people that do not have a dollar value but make us rich in our memories.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Most most most beautiful and sweet and sad.

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for visiting! Drop by again!

Hosts: Your Room's Ready

Hosts: Your Room's Ready
My newest novel! A fun romp through the world's most haunted hotel!

The Long-Awaited Sequel to Daughter of Ishmael

The Long-Awaited Sequel to Daughter of Ishmael
A House Divided is now available at all fine bookstores and on Amazon.com and .ca!

Daughter of Ishmael

Daughter of Ishmael
Now available at Amazon.com and .ca and Chapters.ca and other fine bookstores.

Follow by Email

Hugs, Delivered.

Compass Book Ratings

Compass Book Ratings

Ghost of the Overlook

Ghost of the Overlook
Need a fright?

Google+ Followers

Networked Blogs

My Granddaughter is Carrying on the Legacy!

My Granddaughter is Carrying on the Legacy!
New Tween Novel!

Gnome for Christmas

Gnome for Christmas
The newest in my Christmas Series

SnowMan

SnowMan
A heart warming story of love and sacrifice.

Translate

My novel, Carving Angels

My novel, Carving Angels
Read it! You know you want to!

My Second Novel: Kris Kringle's Magic

My Second Novel: Kris Kringle's Magic
What could be better than a second Christmas story?!

About the Mom

My photo

Diane was born and raised on one of the last of the great old Southern Alberta ranches. A way of life that is fast disappearing now. Through her memories and stories, she keeps it alive. And even, at times, accurate . . .

Join me on Maven

Connect with me on Maven

Essence

Essence
A scientist and his son struggle to keep their earth-shattering discovery out of the wrong hands.

Essence: A Second Dose

Essence: A Second Dose
Captured and imprisoned, a scientist and his son use their amazing discovery to foil evil plans.

Looking for a Great Read?

E-Books by Diane Stringam Tolley
Available from Smashwords.com

The Babysitter

The Babysitter
A baby-kidnapping ring has its eye on J'Aime and her tiny niece.

Melissa

Melissa
Haunted by her past, Melissa must carve a future. Without Cain.

Devon

Devon
Following tragedy, Devon retreats to the solitude of the prairie. Until a girl is dropped in his lap.

Pearl, Why You Little...

Pearl, Why You Little...
Everyone should spend a little time with Pearl!

The Marketing Mentress

The Marketing Mentress
Building solid relationships with podcast and LinkedIn marketing

Coffee Row

Coffee Row
My Big Brother's Stories

Better Blogger Network

Semper Fidelis

Semper Fidelis
I've been given an award!!!

The Liebster Award

The Liebster Award
My good friend and Amazing Blogger, Marcia of Menopausal Mother awarded me . . .

Irresistibly Sweet Award

Irresistibly Sweet Award
Delores, my good friend from The Feathered Nest, has nominated me!

Sunshine Award!!!

Sunshine Award!!!
My good friend Red from Oz has nominated me!!!

My very own Humorous Blogger Award From Delores at The Feathered Nest!

Be Courageous!


Grab and Add!

Search This Blog

Ghost of the Overlook

Ghost of the Overlook
Need a fright?