My Seinfeld peeps know what I'm talkin' about:
We all have that one article of clothing that we reach for first, the one that's comfortable and fits just right and just feels perfect.
Last night I pulled out a favorite t-shirt of mine that I'd pretty much retired a few years ago. It's an XL purple tie-dye that I bought at the natural food store when I was a mere pup of 15 years old. I remember that day so well; it was Springtime, and one of the first warm days of the year. My friend D and I walked down the steep hill from school into town and did a little window shopping, and that shirt just caught my eye. I bought it in the only size they had, which meant that it was far too large to wear out and about. It became my favorite sleep shirt.
About two years later, we had a house fire, and my entire house and all of our belongings burned to the ground. As we sifted through the wreckage, I came across the mangled remains of our washer and dryer, and on a whim I opened the washer to reveal a wet load of laundry still twisted up inside the machine. From that random assortment of clothing, I plucked my Golden Boy, my Purple Power tie-dye.
< insert angelic choir here >
It was the only garment of mine that survived the fire, and I quickly put it back into rotation as my go-to comfy shirt and sleep tee. When I went to college, Purple Power went with me. When I lived in the (co-ed) dorms, I specifically remember getting whistled at while wearing this t-shirt on several occasions. It hits me somewhere mid-thigh, and is baggy enough to show some clavicle up top, but otherwise was suitably modest for walking from my room to the ladies' bathroom, I thought.
Somewhere in my twenties, Purple Power started to get a little ragged. Small holes appeared here and there, and a large rip started under the right armpit. I did not let those blemishes dissuade me from wearing it, and as Jerry says in the clip above, you cannot show preferential treatment to the favorite shirt. Wash, rinse, repeat!
I wore it during hospital stays. I wore it on the night before my wedding. I wore it on those tough nights when the baby wakes you several times a night, needing something and everything and nothing.
One day, a few years ago, the hole under the arm became so gaping that I knew it was time to say goodbye. I folded it neatly and put it on the bottom of my pajama drawer. I didn't dwell on it. I moved on. Purple Power would be there when I needed it, and that was enough.
I'm not sure why, but when I needed it again was last night. As I scrounged through my drawer for something to wear to bed, my fingers brushed against the familiar and well-worn cotton, and I pulled it out and put it on without hesitation. It slipped over my shoulders and grazed my hips just so, and suddenly that gaping hole didn't seem so bad after all. Maybe I'll even stitch it up, despite my lack of enthusiasm for such tedious and domestic tasks as sewing.
Here I am at 6:30 this morning, wearing my Purple Power tee. Yeah, I wear glasses in the AM and no, I hadn't brushed my teeth or hair yet. Deal.
I don't know whether it's because of the shirt or not, but I woke up this morning with words in my head that weren't there before. I wrote them down, and I like them. I think I'll keep doing it. I think this shirt is magical.