I have this old bathrobe. Green and purple paisley printed silk on the outside, lined with a rich purple terrycloth on the inside; its comfy classy, and silky soft.
This old dressing gown has been with me through it all. I threw it on when that late night phone call came. I wore it when my dog was sick, when we huddled in the basement during the tornado warnings, and when I had to talk to the police after the neighbor kids’ toilet papered the house across the street. I literally lived in this thing after my surgery, and when the doctor sentenced me to a month of bed rest during my second pregnancy. (Ugh, that was rough!)
This is what I greeted family in at the hospital after both of my children were born. It’s what I wore when I woke up every three hours of the night to feed them. It’s what their little heads pressed up against when they were sick, as I paced the floor singing lullabies. This robe was what I worried in the night my husbands’ plane got caught in bad weather, and he did not arrive home till 4 am. And I am pretty sure this is the outfit I will have on when my daughter sneaks in the door on the night of her senior prom.
Tonight, I am wearing it because I couldn’t sleep, and decided to write. Often my robe is curled around me when I am writing, or reading one of those books’ that is just so damn good that you just HAVE to finish it, even though your eyes are watering up with tears of tiredness. The paisley print on the cuff is what I find myself staring at when I wonder if “tiredness” is really a word.
My robe is sixteen years old. I remember the day I got her. My husband purchased her for me as a Christmas gift two years into our marriage. I opened the Victoria's" Secret box with such surprise. I had not expected a robe. And purple paisley? Well I guess it was pretty, but not what I would have picked for myself. This dressing gown was a stranger to me; Just a thing. It wasn’t one of those gifts that make a big sensation in the frenzied moments around the Christmas tree, but just a simple gift, offered with love.
I wore it off and on at first, just treating it like any other garment. But over time, this old robe has become a part of who I am. This robe has been around. It seems like it has been wrapped around me during almost every major moment of my life, (not to mention it’s what I am always wearing after, um, well, --you know.)
The funny thing is, I look at this robe and have to admire my husbands sense of style and quality. Even after all these years, this old robe is still in top notch shape. He did not buy a cheap robe. He shopped for the best. I may not be the pretty young woman he bought it for those many years ago, but I still feel like the girl he loves when I put it on. After all the baby spit up, all the dog hair, all the spilled coffee, and everything else in my messy old life, it still looks more than nice enough to make me feel beautiful when I wear it, and it’s certainly still good enough to answer the doorbell in at two am.
When my husband bought me this gift, I’m pretty sure he was not thinking sixteen years down the road. He was just looking for something nice to give his wife.
How could he ever imagine that little gift would come to symbolize a lifetime of living?
If there is anyone out there reading this tonight, and looking for that perfect gift, I suggest a nice silk dressing gown, with quality terry cloth lining. It just might be a wonderful way to wrap someone you love in comfort and style their whole life long.