This Thing I Love Martha Williams & a childhood dress

Martha Williams & a childhood dress

This Thing I Love

Photos by Lauryn Hottinger

This dress holds a lot of sentimental value for me. I wore it in my kindergarten class picture: hands folded on my lap, long hair swept up off my face, sweet little smile on my face. Originally my mom held onto it, remarking that it’s a Polly Flinders dress (a special thing at the time) purchased at Lord and Taylor (a special store in southern New York where grew up). Then she passed it on to me. I thought I’d save it for my daughter, once I got married and had children, or a niece. When I didn’t have children (or nieces, only nephews!) I still felt attached to the dress and what it represented: the innocence of youth, that part of me that still remembers being a 5-year-old girl in the late 60s, the way my mother handed down to me an appreciation for special things, like Polly Flinders dresses from Lord and Taylor’s to mark special occasions. So I kept it. A small part of me feels sad that I never had a daughter to raise and wear this dress. A larger part of me is grateful for the memories of that time, the young girl that I was and the ways I carry her with me in this life.

Martha is a yoga teacher and shamanic practitioner and shares her passion for health and healing with groups and individuals. She and her husband Tom live in Cape Elizabeth where they’re planning their next travel adventure, this time to Northern Ireland.

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