My dear wife died in November, 2014. That December, I walked into our closet with the finest intention of getting her clothes out of the house. I lasted half an hour. I kept finding articles of clothing that I loved seeing Jody wear, many tops and pants that I’d washed with tender loving care. So I walked out of that closet.
Then there were fifteen months of co-existing with Jody’s clothes, trying to block their presence from my mind. That didn’t work. A glimpse here, a glimpse there … a memory here, a memory there.
A few days ago, and again today, I began again. Still a few tears but it was easier. I slowly folded each of Jody’s things and laid them in large transparent bags. They gazed at me from within.
Jody loved colour. Right now I’m looking at a pair of funky pants in a jungle motif. The greenest of leaves and the reddest of orchids interspersed with lions, tigers and leopards – all looking quite fierce. Jodiette was in her element wearing this explosion of energy. And here are soft flannel jammies, adorned with sheep brimming with wool against a pastel blue background. Even when she was sleeping my beloved was a fashion statement! Finally for your inspection is a vibrant top that looks like a patchwork quilt. No pastels here. Instead there are deep shades of purple, pink and green, with strands of material standing up beyond the surface of the garment, highlighting gay flowers. Oh my wife. That’s so you.
This afternoon I took five full bags to Goodwill. It makes me smile to imagine the expressions on women’s faces when they find Jody’s treasures. They’ll wear them well. My dear one is happy.