As I’m still officially recuperating from my illness, I am trying to take it easy, even though it means having quiet, uneventful days at home, and I can’t help feeling that I am not accomplishing anything. I have to remember that the “accomplishing” right now is rebuilding my strength and health and that’s very important. So, this morning, after I had dragged myself out of bed and eaten breakfast, I joined my son Theo who was sitting playing/working on his computer at the dining table and decided that my goal for today would be to rework an old pair of earrings that I didn’t wear into a new pair of earrings that I could give to my friend Susanna, who I knew was going to visit later in the day. I don’t usually have enough time to make jewelry, but since today was officially a sick day, I allowed myself this luxury. I brought out my jewelry making tools and began tinkering, and after half an hour of dissecting the earrings, reorganizing the various elements and adding new details, I had four new pairs of earrings, one for myself, another I thought would be perfect for Susanna, and two extra pairs, which I can give to other friends. Having set my accomplishment bar pretty low today, I was thrilled at the artistic heights I’d attained!
Much later in the day, Susanna stopped by for tea bearing a vase of fragrant flowers and a bowl of lovingly chopped fruit. I made us some tea and we sat outside in the garden talking, leaving Theo at his computer (his computer skills have, not surprisingly, escalated dramatically this last week or so!). I met Susanna through Theo as he and her son, Cash, had been good friends in second grade. Although they are no longer close, Susanna and I decided to keep our friendship going anyway and we meet up occasionally for coffee, a walk or grab a quick chat at school. Her intelligence and sense of humor has made her an entertaining companion and her generous spirit and caring soul has made her a loyal and trustworthy friend. Even though she, like other friends of mine, has her hands full juggling her work (recently her eBay business), co-parenting with her ex, and dealing with intermittent health issues, she’s been there for me in my times of crisis. Right after our house fire, she showed up at our rental house with bags of clothes and blankets for us, as she knew it would take a while for me to get my cleaned clothes back. For a few days I was wearing just her hand-me-downs, and for months her orange blanket has been keeping us warm. Later, for my birthday, she gave me a lovely gold necklace with a V-shaped element that I’d admired on her, saying she really wanted me to have it. I loved that she gave me something of hers – since to me, these can be the most intimate of gifts. She had been out of town when I became sick, but now that she’s back, even though she now has her mother staying with her, she carved our the time to come and see me today. The earrings I made for her with squared carnelian beads were meant to evoke the same angular design as the necklace she gave to me. Like her gift to me, they were part mine. They were also part something brand new created just for her, for a caring friend who enjoys sharing her beloved belongings and her precious time with her people.