The Lost Coat

Today I feel anew.  New start.  New beginnings.  The weather, with the spring/summer season finally arriving, probably plays a part in catapulting this feeling.  Putting away the cumbersome coats of winter for a lighter fair of willowing summer clothes. A sort of metaphor that once played out in my life…

About a favorite coat I had once.  It was the only one I wore, for a long time.  It was so comfortable.  It had some wear and tear when i first shopped it off the rack (several holes at closer examination) but with the invent of the needle (and the thread), I had no problem thinking with just a little mend here, and a little mend there, me and this coat could get through any hard winter.  

Surprisingly, the material wasn’t such that any thread could hold for any substantial length of time even after repeated mendings.  I would end up thinking all was patched and found myself caught walking through winters while harsh cold air scurried through the holes onto my bare skin landing mostly near the mid-left chest area. Where the heart is.

I patched and patched and even tried extra sweaters and long johns but to no avail.  I knew I just couldn’t go another winter struggling to stay warm.  Something had to stick.  The mends had to keep.  I had remembered someone suggested a professional tailor.  One who worked specifically with this sort of problem but I was reluctant.  A tailor would mean having to send off the coat.  I didn’t want to part with my coat.  Not even for a short time.  I knew if I did, I would have to adjust for a while, to walking the streets without this coat.  This coat that I grew attached to for so long.  

There was no choice.  If I kept the coat as is, I would continue to be susceptible to the cold and all sorts of other challenges that can come with that.  I had to part with the coat.  I had to let go short term to gain any chance of long term wear.    

The coat was gone longer than what I would have hoped.  It just took that time for the tailor to create a sewn pattern that would keep a grip.  To my happiness, the coat returned and looking good for me to wear.  The seams, on its face, looked tight.  The look of it spoke “mended” but still I was trepidacious.  I had been here before.  Several times.   Believing in the mend.  Only to end up getting caught in the cold unexpectedly due to what was seemingly hardcore unbreakable stitching, breaking.  At each sign of winter. 

This time, even though a professional tailor had guided the mendings, I wasn’t so fast to put the coat back on and head straight out.  The coat would have to show itself durable and not look as if it was before I was going to attempt winter with it again.  

Sadly, before any harsh weather had even arrived, the coat’s mends immediately struggled, just with the breezes of summer and had lost most of its threading during the briskness of fall.  I knew I could not wear it in winter.

It was a hard choice not to just wear it, just as it was, and just suffer through the cold again or to just let it hang around instead of sending it off to the tailor again.  I didn’t want to say goodbye again.  I didn’t want to have to wait.  I wanted to start wearing the coat again.  I wanted to continue to weather the storms with it.  I didn’t want to send it back and chance losing the coat altogether.  What if the tailor wouldn’t be able to mend it this time and the coat ended up on the streets getting torn and ripped even worse beyond being able to function as even a sweater never mind a coat?  Maybe the tailor would use it accidentally to couple it up as an extra lining on another customer’s coat and off my coat goes with, another?  

Although I had my fears of maybe never getting the coat back in any functional form or even at all, I had to send it back.  If I didn’t, the price would be too hight.  I would have to endure another winter of intermittent warmth and lots of hard bouts of frostbite, along with numerous recovery therapy to ensure saving any effected limbs that might have otherwise been amputated.  By choosing not to wear and and it having to go back, I would alleviate any risk of ending up in the ER with neumonia…

There was no choice.  My hope was that the tailor this time would look deeper into the material and hopefully find the real problem and mend it properly once and for all and get it back to me.  He found the problem.   The tailor discovered the coat’s material was made as such that it would shrink and change form after leaving my atmosphere while going into any other.  The shrinkage would still show surface rips and tears but any main holes were squished together and made to disappear which made the coat look as if it was durable enough to keep one warm for winter  All along, this had made it impossible for any true mending to ever take place.  No one was able to see where the coat really needed to be sewn. 

The final segmant of the coat’s self-shrinking process happened while the coat was being checked in on the hanger carousel.  The coat’s arm sleeve caught in one of the smaller crevices that wouldn’t usually be able to fit the sleeve but could now.  The tailor could not nudge it out and the coat, seeing that the nudging and pulling was starting to expose some of the holes, began shrinking further and tightening the hold.  The coat could have made himself un-stuck if he allowed himself to expand to regular form which would have catapulted the sleeve out from the crevice and also allowed for the tailor to see and then address the real mending that needed to be done which would then return to me, able to protect and warm me throughout all weather patterns to come.  

The coat’s coat esteem, sleeves and size were all so bent out of shape at this point that the buttons started poppin off and lining unraveling.  The coat with its one arm sleeve left free and hanging began to raise it’s arm and pointing outward.  The coat wouldn’t allow itself to see itself as The coat preferred to stay small, shrunk, deep holes hidden and stuck in the carousel making rounds (and round) with any of the pants, suits or even wedding dresses that would not question his true form or structure.  The coat would willingly expose his basic and surface rips that looked pretty severe and thereby was perceived as a brave and “open” coat to its defects.  The coat gained a confidence (although false) amongst the garment community that would come and go, in and out of the tailor shop periodically.    The garments came to trust that the coat must not have anything to hide as it’s been so open and forthright with it’s mending issues already.  

So when the coat would share stories (in material language) about how it got to the carousel to begin with, unbenongst to the garments, the coat was careful to edit and omit or even lie about anything that would threaten exposing it’s true form and therefore its true problems.  The coat would claim it was being tossed around and tossled and left in the garbage to be scooped off to the dump for no apparent reason.   This of course was not true.  The coat had holes and refused to expose them for true mending and knew if he did not he would not be wearable again.  It was too much for the coat to deal with and the stories of his distressed neglect were believed with no challenge by the garments.  This enabled the coat to stay stuck in the carousel, going round and round, spinning truths and hiding holes while at the same time being rewarded and applauded for his brave, straightforward, truthful and brutally open and honest exposure of himself.    

Maybe, the tailor would discover that the coat’s original material was defective and needed a deeper overhaul.

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