Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Shirt

I have a shirt that is old and worn that still hangs around in my closet. It was not even a nicely made shirt, cut from cheap material, stretched and warped.... but still each season that I sort and rid my closet of old clothes this shirt never goes in the trash bin with the others. Sometimes, I put on this shirt on a day at home just to feel its cheap cotton polyester blend next to my skin. When I picked up the tshirt at Wal-Mart many years ago, I was excited to get a trendy looking shirt for so cheap. Now I really dont even like the way the design looks. It has a logo of a snake eating an apple and says " the big apple" and is intertwined with sparrows and flowers. I figured it would help me make it through the summer months on my days off at home and at the end of the summer, once it had seen its share of sweat and lounging, it would go out with that years fashions. Somehow the tshirt hung around through the winter and stretched and grew with my pregnant baby belly. When it was time for the baby to be born I packed it away in our suitcase to make the trip to the hospital with us so I would have something comfortable to wear after delivery. Of course, this baby that I was pregnant with at the time was Faith and the time that I needed to be in the hospital in something comfy ended up spanning many days.
The day that I woke up and put the tshirt on had seen us go through five or six days of clothes from our suitcase and it was time to go to the laundromat again. I only had this shirt and a navy one left( the navy one never did fit right) and I chose this one becuase it was the better looking of the two. I didnt know that morning that the $11 tshirt from walmart(WITH A SNAKE ON IT!) that was stretched and warped would be the shirt I would wear the moment I finally got to hold my precious tiny girl. Nor did I imagine that it would be the last shirt to touch my skin as I whispered goodbye as she tiptoed off to heaven or that I would have the last photos of her with me taken it that shirt.
As ugly as THE shirt is, I dont know if I can ever let it go. Its my linus blanket of sorts, the thing that draws my memories quickly to her, the thing I am able to touch and feel now that I cant feel her sweet warm baby skin again. It reminds me of that last moment I was able to cradle her body to my chest, brush my hand over her baby fine hair, sing her a lullabye as she drifted to sleep........