The week after she died, a man I didn’t know stopped me in the park outside her house and gave me a hug.
“Your mom was cool,” he told me. “You can’t say that about a lot of moms.”
In her will, she left me all her clothes and shoes. Her feet were two sizes smaller than mine and I know, I just know, that mum didn’t intend for me to go around dressed like a 73-year-old. Maybe she just didn’t want my brother to have to deal with it.
After five months I crammed almost everything into bags to take to the Salvation Army and still saved more than I should have. All her hoodies, some scarves and Icebreaker socks.
The sweaters and long-sleeve T-shirts: these are for wearing around on days when I can stay home, missing her, never getting around to a shower. They’re for having her little dog up on my lap, pinning him into a cuddle, wondering if he remembers her smell.