Last year, I made the decision with my mother to move her into assisted living. Time passes, things happen and before I knew it Mom needed to be somewhere else. She needed a safe place where she wouldn’t be alone all the time.
We found that place and in the chaos of moving her in, we of course had to sift through years of stuff … some wonderful things, like her antique jewelry collection, her perfume bottle collection, and many things that recall my childhood.
One such item is a purse. A clutch actually, that I gave to Mom for Christmas one year when I was in high school. I remember the clutch well, as I always liked it myself and I noticed she never used it.
I think carpet bags were popular at the time and that may be what inspired me. It’s not a special bag – it has no label and I know my babysitting income wasn’t going anywhere in I. Magnin. It was probably from The Emporium. The rich colors of gold and black made it, at the time, a handbag for dressy occasions. The inside is lined with silk-like fabric, has one pocket, and a Velcro closure (a handbag from I. Magnin would have had a elegant button, I’m sure).
Over the years when I sometimes came across the bag in her drawer, I’d wonder why she didn’t use it but not in any hurt way, more curious. What crossed my mind in chronological order:
- She tended to save things. 2. She didn’t want it to wear out because I gave it to her. 3. She didn’t like it. 4. I’m not sure she’s a clutch type of gal.
But I didn’t ask and I won’t now either. I did, however, take the bag for myself when we were clearing out her dresser.
The other evening my partner and I went out for a nice dinner and I decided to use Mom’s clutch for the first time. Surprisingly it holds a lot, is easy to carry and has a slight plush feel. I enjoyed having it.
Perhaps there was another reason she didn’t use the handbag – she was saving it for me.