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  • Mary Fichtner

The Hoodie

Since it is Valentine’s Day I thought it would be fun to share a funny part of my love story…


If you are married or have ever dated you are familiar with the feeling of elation toward someone whom you can’t get enough of. Someone who consumes most of your thoughts, including counting the minutes until you are in their presence again.


Let’s be honest, there is nothing close to that passion, and what a great time in life it is.


Sights and sounds can trigger many things, especially in this area. I have such an item.


When I was dating my husband at the University of Wyoming in 1985, I fell for him hard and fast. We had only been “hanging out” (as the kids say) a week or two at the most. We didn’t do the “official” thing back then either.


We laugh about it now, how it was apparently assumed when we became exclusive. It’s funny to think back on that because navigating the appropriate actions and rules were not for the weak of heart. That adds something to this story as sometimes actions carry the risk of misinterpreting the relationship.


One morning on my way to class I noticed he had left his Athletics hoody on my couch. He was a swimmer and wore it a lot. One glance and I knew it smelled like him. Sorry if that’s too much information but I couldn’t wait to get that hoody on. So that I did.




woman in a Wyoming hoodie


Now mind you, I had never one time since we had been hanging out, or even before, seen him on campus. We met off campus and it seemed our schedules never crossed.


I just knew I was safe from being caught wearing his hoody without his permission.


And since I didn’t ask, I definitely didn’t want to see him. So off I went on my bike. I was just arriving at my first class when I almost ran over him with my bike.


Yes, there I sat facing him, with his University of Wyoming hoody on. Honestly, I was mortified. I wanted to melt into the concrete. We exchanged niceties and said we would see each other later.


It was a seemingly weird and nonsignificant incident in our relationship but at the same time a turning point. I somehow felt an unspoken confirmation that it was okay for me to have a piece of him without even asking.


Never was a word spoken of it until many years later. I still wear that sweatshirt to this day.


woman in a University of Wyoming althetic hoodie


It represents so much to me, as silly as that may sound. It is a symbol of confirmation of a future that I could have never dreamt up. The beginning of a life filled with dreams, hardships, unexpected curves, blessings, and all in life that matter.


An old hoody that will never leave my closet, yes you read that right….MY closet.


And as you can see, he still lets me wear his letter jacket.



couple at a game with the woman wearing a letter jacket




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