Fill your closet with wonderful memories…
Recently, I was at an Ilene Beckerman book signing for her book Love, Loss, and What I Wore. I watched her as she penned, “Fill your closet with wonderful memories,” inside the front cover of my copy. I was enraptured. It was a sentiment of such exquisite imagery, that it nearly took my breath away.
At that moment, I was flooded with long forgotten memories. I was transported back to the day I went shopping with my grandmother for my 4th grade confirmation. My very first totally matching outfit ever! It included a red dress, red coat, red straw hat, white gloves, white patent leather shoes and a white patent leather purse.
…the memories started to overwhelm me.
The gold corduroy dress with a long purse that snapped onto the shoulder which I loved…I was 10.
The suede coat I wore endlessly when I was 16. It had a rabbit fur collar and tons of belts and buckles that clanked when I walked. I had been babysitting for a clothing sample salesman and after the kids were asleep, snuck a peek at a rack of clothes in his entryway. I traded babysitting hours for the coat…
Opening night of “A Chorus Line” in Daytona Beach, FL, 1994: I wore vintage heels, a miniskirt and a wildly inappropriate (but much noticed) lace top with a red bra…
But that was then, what about now?
When I got home from the book signing I went to my closet and looked closely. Instead of wonderful memories, I was filled with guilt, regret and questions: “Why did I buy that? Will I ever wear that again? Why am I keeping that?”
I looked closer.
I can’t get rid of this dress. I wore it when my sister and I went to Dallas and had a fabulous dinner at Mansion Of Turtle Creek. We got drunk on both the wine and the attentions of the most gorgeous waiters we had ever seen!
I know I won’t wear that top again, but I was wearing it the first time I held my great nephew.
I don’t like those shoes, but my mother-in-law and I bought matching pairs at a Macy’s sale in Fresno. I’ll never forget how we were giggling like schoolgirls while our husbands drank coffee at a nearby Starbucks.
Wait a minute…
Maybe my closet isn’t full of guilt, regret and questions. I have been filling my closet with wonderful memories! The fabric from which those garments are made has helped to weave the stories of my life.
With a smile on my face, I closed my closet door, and said a silent thank you to Ilene Beckerman.
To purchase your copy of Love, Loss and What I Wore click here.