I found this post in the archives last night and it felt fitting to re-share. I've been thinking about loss and sentimental jewelry recently. I don't remember the details of receiving this locket, but it and the photos inside have stayed with me from high school to college, through moves across the city to my big move across the country. I never wear it, but I look at it often and it brings a peaceful feeling. Not sadness, but memories. I suppose that's the purpose of antique mourning jewelry. Here's a post about my grandmother that I wrote right after I found out she passed away - she still inspires me daily. I miss her.
Written September 24, 2008:
"Today one of the most amazing people I have known in my short life passed away. I have known this person since I was born and to me she was always a role model.
After coming to America from Italy as a teenager, she pursued her passion for art, drawing and especially designing clothes. As a young woman, she got married and opened her own children’s clothing store in Philadelphia. While running her own business and designing clothes, she raised four daughters. This woman lived through her husband being sent to war, through his battle with alcoholism and then a divorce. This person represented a strong woman to me growing up. She showed me that you could be independent without being selfish. She touched so many people’s lives and I was incredibly lucky to have her in my life. She gave all she could to everyone in her life and lit up every room she entered.
This person told me I was beautiful from the moment she met me and every day from then on. She was hilarious and throughout my years growing up we spent a lot of time together. We had so much in common including a love for accessories, leopard print and much of our outlook on life.
She passed away a few hours ago. I have not seen her in weeks because I have become selfish and lost the time to visit. She fell yesterday and broke her hip. For a few years she had been in a nursing home and from the beginning did not want to be there. She was a free spirit who valued her independence. At the age of 93, she lost the will to live.
Anna Reaph, my grandmother"