Her heart must have felt a sense of fullness for what her life represented now, in a new country, compared to the impoverishment of her formative years. Though her mind did not consciously register that her impulse shopping was needlessly excessive with each purchase of useless fabric -- the fabric itself came to represent the donning of a new life, replete with an aura of the Emperor's New Clothes.
These moments became a quest to compensate for the lack which once was. The only two outfits she owned in her younger years, replaced by yard upon yard of silken threads to wrap herself in luxuriously, to finger finely, to fold neatly, into her now burgeoning suitcase -- not to wear, but simply to have, to look at, to carry, as a reminder of the gap between a barren past and a prosperous future, but without the ability to truly enjoy the present.
The poverty consciousness she developed due to her childhood circumstances has never left her, even when she was able to afford more than she could have ever imagined. But her gift to me has been providing a life of abundance both material and otherwise. Her hardship and endurance when she was half my age -- a sacrifice for enabling me to have the type of life, now, that she would have likely wanted for herself. I send her my gratitude and love for all the gifts she has bestowed. The ones without a price tag, which are worth more than the world itself.
|Outfits my mother lovingly and painstakingly folded, pinned and wrapped when I was getting married.|