Your perfume is a scent that evokes a thousand memories though I know, with an almost nostalgic sense of loss, that you don’t wear those notes these days. I will pick up the bottle whenever I see it, bright yellow gold in a bottle marked ‘Sunflowers’ or perfect, ivory cylinders with a crown of doves. A private memory betwixt the shelves of a pharmacy.
Lately I’ve taken to wearing a simple, rose scented water that cost nothing but smells so much like our time together that I can’t help but resist it even when someone tells me that it doesn’t quite suit me. Now I smell like the version of you from my childhood and you smell like Chanel No.5, a more refined version of the woman that made me but that you grew out of.
I sometimes go to buy you a bottle but stop myself because I think that it would make you feel ashamed to wear the perfume that was all you could afford back then, to go back when you have achieved much. As an adult I realise that you don’t see her as I do, you don’t know that to me she was beautiful.
She will always be the warmth of home, the companionship in times of only ‘you and I’. When they were gone and we were alone. Sometimes we were sad and sometimes we played with scarves of happy colours to make happy memories. Her hair and clothing escape me through the years, her figure, our disagreements, the things we did and didn’t do are gone or filed away.
Others know you to be beautiful from the way that you look. Yet I know that you are beautiful from the way that we have changed together. Both women now, friends, and equals in a way that few others can claim when talking of their mother. So much between us has changed that I can’t remember when it happened.
But that perfume takes me home.