The multi-colored hearts on the elbow patches are tattered, the zipper doesn’t stay up longer than two minutes, and the arms and waist are out-stretched from years of layering (this being the prizewinning outermost layer) and pulling the sleeves down around my wrists to try to stay warm; combined with one winter pregnancy. I’ve thought about giving it to a friend, and I’ve thought about throwing it away. I have a rabid desire toward cleansing my wardrobe every few years; but no, it has withstood too many closet purges, and it’s finally decided, I won’t be getting rid of this. Ultimately, it will go into a box in the attic of our first house, where my future daughter or my son’s future wife will rifle through and decide it’s retro enough to be worn.

This sweater hitchhiked hundreds of kilometers across several countries on a European tour, fighting the brutal cold of weather and drivers attempting to ignore my need to get to the next show. It has withstood cross-country road trips in icy cars with no heat. And I wore it in one of Hawk’s music videos. He had a burgundy hoodie, too. So we’re there, in matching merlot-tinted sweaters, across a large room from each another, chirping away.

It is a comfort sweater, a cozy hug even when real hugs are available. Because of the rainbow hearts, I like to think it matches everything; and it has a hood, which many know is an immediate gold function of sweaters.

Mostly, it reminds me of my expanding tum (hence the zipper malfunction), the somehow-still-linked threads encapsulating what was soon to be my nine-pound son. It was the sweater I wore before anyone knew, asking Hawk, “Can you even tell I’m pregnant in this?” with answers ranging from a discerning, emphatic no-way sneer paired with vigorous shaking of the head, all the way up to the first shy, “Well, yeah, babe.” With his birth, it became the sweater of two generations.

What’s your favorite sweater & why? Spare a picture? :)


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