Twinkle, twinkle, little snowflakes, how you are glistening. I’m not sure what was grabbing my captive attention more – the sunlight itself or how the sun’s rays created the snowflakes sparkling. Reminded of a description someone shared about one of her special friends in a fur coat: if only others could see he is a jewel, like an undiscovered black opal. Unable to get my camera to adequately capture what looked like a trail of diamonds guiding our way, I began to think about an oyster and how a pearl may be safely tucked in place.
Behind two closed shells, in darkness, a treasured pearl remains until time for its discovery. The time just after the oyster has reached its time to fulfill its destiny. Unfortunately, the oyster must give its life for the pearl to be seen. The flow of life such that sometimes sadness proceeds beauty. I begin to see the snow nestled in shadows in which the sparkles are less vibrant in their shine. Where there is a sheltering, a protection from the wooded tree line. The sun shines through the trees reminding me that you cannot extinguish light. And that it is a harmony, a rhythmic collaboration between the cold air, the snow, the trees, and the sun in the sky.
The snow would not be glistening without the sun, nor the below freezing air. And the sun would not be reflecting so radiantly if the ground was bare. The trees enable the snow to stay without melting under the sun’s heat. And the trees embrace the warmth of the sun so that the snow doesn’t weigh heavy on the trees’ limbs in outreach. One without the other and I wouldn’t see today’s exquisite beauty. The cold and the snow are necessary for fully appreciating the sun’s vibrancy.
Her wise words replay in my mind. We don’t always get to pick how much time. These words she speaks in reverence for life’s fragility. These words she speaks as she prepares for new beginnings. She will be saying goodbye and hello simultaneously. Two separate transitions intertwined in their happenings. One goodbye will feel more permanent in comparison, though comparing not an easy feat. For the other transition holds space in her heart equally. Both transitions carry hello, in addition to their goodbyes. Both oysters, each with their pearls inside.
She hasn’t found the pearls yet for either change, though she has faith she will with one sooner, and the other over much more time. She knows that in the hardest moments of letting go, the greatest gifts she finds. She’s had much practice, like the trees. Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall – the changing seasons a continuum of certainty. Like the trees that have grown taller, larger, and sturdier through each shedding of their leaves. With each separation and see you later, she has grown in her hope and in her trusting.
The security for a pearl is inside the oyster who is nourished by the water in which the oyster lives. The snow a nourishment for plants and animals, its melted form a gift. She does not and will not have unending time to spend with those she holds dear, external forces beyond her control picking the allotted amount. Perhaps, though, her tears will be the nourishment for the tiny white circles yet to be found.
The tiny pearls that are most certainly waiting for just that right time. When through the doors of change she walks, stepping into the beautiful gifts of life.