Sometimes, she would stand before a shop window for a little while, and other times she would flip through the fashion magazines at the doctor’s waiting room; and each night, Maruxa and the sewing machine spent hours and hours remembering the details of those dresses she could not buy but could replicate. I remember perfectly the noise made by the sewing machine’s pedal, the thread on the floor, the strips of fabric all over the living room, and my mother’s infinite focus. At the time, I was not aware of the effort that «dressing us well» supposed nor of the importance this had for her. At the time, I was not even aware of the reason.
My mother, for love, made these dresses with love. With care and devotion. With attention to detail. And even though she now says she does not really like to sew, her bees nest embroidery and her pleated skirts were true works of art.
In days like today, when it seems that love has turned into a transaction, into a fast product, into a flower bouquet, or a box of chocolates; one does not wish to forget the true and profound significance of the word love. The good wishes, the affection, the care, the tenderness; doing things just because, just because they make us feel right, without expecting anything in return.
The process of the dresses that my mother made helped me remember the power and the worth of the intangible. Because love is also a matter of time, dedication, and patience; and at times, what matters most is not so much what we do but how we do it. For this reason, each time I look back to that time in my life, I hear my mother’s sewing machine in my head and remember Saint-Exupéry phrase in his Little Prince: «It is only with the heart that one can see rightly. What is essential is invisible to the eye.»