My mother made our Halloween costumes by hand. She baked elaborate birthday cakes, made holidays feel like magic, and as my sister and I got older found other ways to show us how much she loved us. Going to work early so she could be at every soccer game we played in, putting surprises in our lunches for school, hosting sleepovers with all our friends, these were ways that she constructed a chilldhood and memories. I loved to create things as a child, and she fostered that in me by providing construction paper, Duct Tape, scissors, etc. Eventually she taught me to sew, and this elevated my creations from ragged Teddy Bears, to pillows, to clothes, to when she helped me turn a tie-dyed sheet that we made into a quilt for my first college dorm.
My mom and dad created a safe home on our 27 acre farm outside a small town in Pennsylvania where I felt I could travel and explore and still have this foundation that was unwavering. Then there was a crack. We found out that my mom had cancer in the spring of 2001. She passed away just a month later. My life didn’t make sense anymore. The world didn’t seem like a possible place without her in it. I was just nineteen years-old when I spoke at her Memorial Service, and I shared a story about butterflies and read a poem called “Butterflies are Free.”
Our community stepped up for our family. Our friends and family surrounded us with love and with butterflies as a way to show us that she’s still with us. I was supposed to be transferring to college that fall in Colorado. I made these plans before my mom got sick, and when I asked my dad what he wanted me to do, he gave me his most selfless parent response…that he wanted me to “Go and live my life.”
Colorado has been a vital part of my grief and healing journey. Just two weeks after I got here and was spending every day trying to fill up the minutes, the hours, two girls walked by my house with a wagon of puppies. I picked the one that they said “No one ever picks.” And I named her Posa, short for Mariposa (butterfly in Spanish). She brought me back to life and was my companion for over 14 years. After college I started working with young people in Denver, and as I worked tirelessly to fill the void of losing my mom and sharing the love and nurturing that she gave me, I stopped creating things. I hadn’t touched a sewing machine since my mom was alive until I sat down and came up with the design for this scarf. I made several prototypes to try to perfect the design, but with the demands of working two jobs in education, they sat in a drawer for a long time.
I met my husband Paul in May of 2013. That December he was going to a birthday party for his teenage cousin. He said he needed to go buy her a scarf or “something,” and so I showed him one of the ones I made. He lit up. He studied Theater in college and so had to learn costume construction. He refined the design, and this is the product that we have today. When we decided to go on this business adventure together, we debated for a long time as to what we should call the scarf and our company. We just kept going back to “Posa.”
I have felt in different stages of metamorphosis throughout my grief, but creating a company that honors the dog, who saved my life, and my mom, our Butterfly, who continues to make us all grow, has been a big part of my healing.
Posa Apparel. We build CONNECTION and share our stories through fashion. You can learn more about us on our website and contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org oor email@example.com. A portion of every purchase goes to a charity of your choice.