Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Salamander Pajamas

One year ago this month my family lost my beloved Aunt Barbara.  To say she is missed is such an understatement... the world lost a little bit of sunshine the day she passed away. I'm not the only one who thinks she was pretty darn special either- Emerson High School is dedicating a softball field to her.  She was a high school teacher and softball coach for years and years and many people worked together in the effort to honor her this way.  Like I said, she is missed by many people.  The dedication is at the end of this month and although I am sad that I don't get to be there, I was filled with pride when I was sent this picture of the brand new sign:

I mean really, how awesome is that?

Like I said, I am going to miss the dedication, but I know I will be thinking of her that day.  Actually, I think of her often and nothing in particular really triggers it.  They are just random memories of Aunt B that come my way from time to time and I love that.  The one thing I always hope to remember though is her voice.  That voice is engrained in my memory and I hope it's there to stay.  Anytime I talked to her on the phone she'd say, "Hi, Kimber!" and that's the phrase that I can still hear.  And I really miss hearing it.

The other day I was switching out Jake's clothes yet again.  It seems like all I've done during year one is bring one bin up to the attic and bring another one down.  It's kind of fun in a way because I get to see all of the new outfits my little man will be wearing in the upcoming months, but it's always a bit sad to put the ones he has outgrown away.  It's just a reminder of how quickly the little one is growing up.  But on this particular occasion, I got such a special treat.  As I pulled out items of clothing one by one a particular pair of pants caught my eye.  I just sat there, frozen in place as I stared at them in the bin.  Tiny pajama pants, covered in colorful salamanders, would probably be nothing special to anyone else.  But to me, they were a gift all over again.  Jake never met his Great Aunt B, but before she passed away she sent him a pair of pajamas.... cute, colorful salamander pajamas.  I remember opening them and thinking to myself how very "Aunt B" they were and how I couldn't wait for him to wear them someday.  With tags still on them I packed them in the 12-18 month bin and forgot all about them.  And then twelve months later I stumbled upon them- simple salamander pajamas that have taken on a whole new meaning... the most special gift a little boy could receive, but an even more special gift for his mama.

Aunt B, it's as if you planned it.  Thank you for popping in and saying "hello" to me and my little boy the other day... it's another one of those memories that will forever be branded in my mind.  Just a mom unpacking her child's clothes to find herself sobbing in the upstairs hallway, all because of a pair of pajamas.  But now, when my little man wears them, they are filled with energy and life, just as you would have it.  And I know that no matter what, you're a part of him and he's a part of you, and your legacy will be carried on forever.  A part of me is always sad when I put away the clothes that Jake has outgrown, but when these get too small, I'm really not sure I'll be able to pack them away with the rest.  Perhaps he'll just have to wear them until the seams fall out.

You are truly missed.


  1. Kim, we had one of those moments the other day, too! When preparing for our garage sale we went to the storage unit and brought back the old white toy box. Inside were stuffed animals, and among them, Aunt Barb's "B-Dog". It gave us a pause. B-Dog is now happily displayed on the dresser. Thanks, Aunt B, for visiting us, too. We miss you bunches!

  2. B-Dog is still around???? I KNEW IT!!! I was so upset that I couldn't figure out where it had gone before her funeral and just knew that I wouldn't have given that one away... it was just too special. So glad he's in good hands. :)

  3. Kim, this one made me tear up, too. I think of Barb so often and miss her so. How special thatbshe paidbyou a little visit thru finding the pj's. Don and I are looking forward to the ball field dedication. Julie