Within a few days of Rick's death on April 23, 2015, I was sitting there in my recliner, fingering the pearls that lay on my throat.
A string of pearls that Rick had bought for me one Christmas many years before.
As I sat there with those pearls between my fingers, I realized that grief is like a pearl.
When an oyster gets a grain of sand in him, he does not spit it out.
When that grain of sand hurts him, or annoys him, he adds a shimmering layer around it.
Time after time.
Day after day.
Usually taking 2 - 7 years of doing this, over and over and over yet again.
A pearl is created, formed.
What happens if you cut that pearl open?
What do you find?
A grain of sand in the middle.
The layers did not absorb the grain of sand.
The grain of sand did not melt away.
It is still there.
And in that moment of time that seemed to stand still for me,
I realized that the grief would always be in my heart
And I was ok with that
Great grief is indicative of a great love
I enjoyed the Love we shared and made
So I will bear up and carry this grief with dignity and with grace
I also realized that it was up to me to figure out what my layers were
What could I put around that grief when it hurt me, when it simply annoyed me?
A long walk
A guilt free nap
A movie that I could get lost in
A TV show that would make me laugh out loud - Friends, I Love Lucy, M*A*S*H*, or any number of comedies
A treasured book that I have read more than once
A conversation with someone who sadly "gets" the grief process
A cup of coffee while sitting on the porch
And a hundred or more other layers
All with the hope that perhaps one day, my grief would become that treasured pearl to someone
So, on that day 5 years ago, I decided to make this journey all about Pearls
Seemed fitting then, and now, remembering how that Rick called me his "pearl of great price"
And knowing that my name, Margaret, means "Pearl"
Pearls of Wisdom
I have often heard the term "pearls of wisdom", but giving little thought to why they were called that.