I had a 45 minute phone conversation with a student's parent last thing before I left for the weekend on Friday, which reduced me to tears and temporarily shattered my inner piece. She confided in me news about her health that will be devastating to her family, and in turn affect her son in my classroom. I promptly went out to buy an elephant bracelet, to send home with her son to give to her. Its a duplicate of the elephant bracelet that I bought myself on the day of my biopsy - a symbol of good luck, strength, serenity, and wisdom (hence the creation of this blog).
For the majority of my weekend, I've been carrying this grief, for a person I hardly know, heavily on my back, and fully acknowledging that I have to let it go.
Then I remembered the turtle charm that a friend brought me from his travels, and the symbolism behind it. I don't remember the exact words he told me, but I looked it up.
I finally found a place for my turtle to live, attaching it to a bracelet representing life's journey: Live the life you love. Love the life you live. I think its fitting, and plan to wear it often. The elephant will always be my thing, but the turtle can be an extra guardian as I charge forth into the newly improved life that has been built around me. I am learning new lessons everyday, as a result of my experience the past 9 months -> February 5th, forever being the day that changed my life. (Feb. 5th is also my half birthday!)
Turtles are a popular symbol in mythology because of their longevity and one’s hope and wish for a long life. With their protective shells and charming demeanor, they are often found to be symbols of tranquility. Many cultures depict the turtle as carrying the world on its back or supporting the heavens.
I'm carrying the weight of this woman's news on my back right now, but I need to let my turtle shell protect me.
Turtles and Elephants have a lot in common, both being a symbol of strength and tranquility.
I hope that the elephant bracelet will mean something to her, and help give her strength as she marches forth.
So, between her news, still reeling from the death of my friend last week, all the horrible crazy things happening in the world right now (#Beirut #Paris #Refugees #Mizzou, all of which I can't even begin to comment on), and unexpectedly getting together with old, and wonderful friends from out of town, I've been an emotional roller coaster: grief, joy, and nostalgia. Life is Lifey. I didn't anticipate this weekend to be so full.