Monday, August 20, 2018
The Woven Coverlet
I awoke very early this morning. A dream had disturbed my sleep. In the dream, my father was riding a motorcycle with my mother riding on the back. She was holding him tight. I was in Las Vegas and they were coming to meet me. When they rolled past me in the dream, I woke up and couldn't go back to sleep. In my video podcast the other day I talked about my mother. I suppose that is why she is on my mind now and infiltrating my dreams. Every so often she pops up in my dreams.
I got out of bed and started cleaning my house. The kitchen needed to be tidied up and the second bathroom needed some attention. I replaced the sheets on my bed with a new set. As I was pulling out the sheets from the linen closet, I had to move a beautiful woven coverlet out of the way. I decided to use the coverlet on the bed even though it is more for the winter months because of its weight. The coverlet is a gift to me from my mother. My mother received it as a gift from her aunt, Atoali'i, on her wedding day, September 11, 1971. Aunty Atoali'i flew from New Zealand to attend the nuptials of my parents. She brought the very heavy and expensive coverlet all that way.
My mother never used the coverlet. Ever. I saw it for the first time when she gifted it to me. She told me the story of where it came from and how she carefully preserved it so that she could give it to me on my wedding day. One day I will pass this on to my third niece on her wedding day. (Niece #1 and Niece #2 have other items that I saved for them.) Hopefully she will take good care of it so that it will continue through space and time and she can tell this same story to her daughter on her wedding day.
We attach all our sentimentality onto an object, an heirloom, and we pass it forward through time. My mother has no memory attached to the coverlet except that she received it from her aunt as a wedding gift. There's no sensational story about how it was the only thing she and my father had in their first year of marriage. No story about how it got wet in a flood and was the only thing they salvaged of all their material possessions. No. There's no story because the coverlet was tucked away in her bedroom closet along with her and my father's vinyl LP's and the very expensive genuine silver flatware that was also a wedding gift.
So what, exactly, was my mother's intention in saving this gorgeous coverlet for me? I have concluded that she placed all her hopes and dreams for me onto it. It is an expensive item that she never found occasion to use but she knew that, even before I was conceived, she would pass it on to her daughter. Me. And I don't know what her hopes for me were. She never shared them with me. One day when I do give this coverlet to niece #3, I will tell her this story and I will tell her all of my hopes and my dreams for her.
I hope she will eat healthy and take care of her body because it houses her spirit and her mind. I hope that she will always be her most genuine and authentic and be true to herself even in the face of fierce opposition that may sometimes be from her closest family and friends. I hope that she will choose to be happy all the days of her life even when the trials of daily life threaten to overcome her. I hope that she will always hear and listen to her own voice and trust her gut instincts because her life is hers to live and no one elses. I hope that if she is religious, she will also be spiritual, and always remember that the qualities of love and compassion affect humanity more positively than dogma. Most of all, I hope she lives a magnificent life and that she is always surrounded by people who love her and treat her like the little queen that she is.