Let me be clear, I’m not one of those people that think that humans can like, dare I say love a t-shirt as they would other humans, or that the loss of a t-shirt is as grievous as the loss of a close friend or family member. But it can be painful none the less.
I’ve suffered the loss of many favorite t-shirts in my life, even as a child I can remember losing a well enjoyed Scooby-Doo shirt, it still hurts to this day. It seems an unfortunate truth that a favorite t-shirt’s life span can be fairly short, especially when it is worn regularly, their deaths, and yes, I call the loss of a favorite t-shirt a “death”, always seem premature and unfair, even if they lasted several years. I never thought about the inevitability of losing this last one. It is difficult for me to put my current grief into the proper words, but it have caused a feeling, or maybe an awareness that transience’s one’s own life.
I’m not going to try and expound on my t-shirts attributes or claim that my shirt was better than your shirt. But it was big on comfort, I really enjoyed working out in it, I thought it hung nicely off my muscles, I even think it made me appear larger than I really am, it was that great of a t-shirt. Yes, it wasn’t perfect, it had bad habits, and there was always this one wrinkle that never seemed to go away. And it never found a stain it didn’t like keeping, but looking past these idiosyncrasies, don’t we all have a few bad habits?
My t-shirt had been around awhile, it was going on 5 years old, the colors weren’t as vibrant anymore, but the fabric remained healthy, there was life in those threads, always ready for an adventure or a quick trip to the gym. I often thought it, and intuitively knew it, but pushed away the inescapable fact that my favorite t-shirt would be gone soon.
Last week I noticed a new tear in my t-shirts fabric, it was clearly beyond my abilities to repair, and with each washing that tear spread like a deadly virus, slowly consuming my beloved t-shirt. It was clear that my favorite t-shirt had become terminal. I knew the end was near, I would have stopped washing it to conserve our time together but I knew my t-shirt liked to be clean, free of my body odors for which it had long suffered.
Then this morning the time had clearly come, I pulled my favorite t-shirt from the dryer, and saw that the tear had finally taken its toll, my beloved t-shirt was barely hanging on by a thread. It was clear what I needed to do, it was time to face the facts I had been in denial of for so long….It was time to put my favorite t-shirt down.
I put it on one last time, it’s tattered threads hanging loosely off my exquisite frame (sarcasm) then as if it was telling me to let it go, I heard it tear just a little more as I adjusted it, I then took it off, held it briefly in my hands, I said my Goodbye’s and slowly tossed it into the garbage. I had contemplated giving it a Viking Funeral by setting it ablaze in my neighbor’s yard, but it was pretty chilly out. So I slowly walked upstairs and placed my “New” favorite t-shirt on, some might say it’s just a “Rebound Shirt” but we all handle grief in our own ways.