Sunflowers and baby’s breath
Friday July 21st 2023, 8:51 pm
Filed under: History,Life

I was walking into Trader Joe’s yesterday when my eyes met those of an older woman looking into mine with clear and delighted recognition on her part. Ukrainian Orthodox, was my guess. I noted she did a quick glance at my chest, but no, I was not wearing a gerdan this time.

My mistake and one I instantly felt a pang at. I try to put one on before any outing around here for the sake of the refugees, if I’m not wearing an embroidered blouse from there, and instead she was the one smiling and putting me at ease.

I had not been planning on buying more of either for the moment.

She’ll never know it but I’m sure the impact on me of that, of how it made me feel that what I’ve been trying to do is actually more important to the community than I’d had any idea–and not just to me–is part of how the following happened.

What I wrote this morning to a Ukrainian artist I had not previously actually interacted with but whose page I had followed for months:

This is a beautiful necklace and I have admired your skill and art, but had not done more than that.

I woke up this morning with the surprise of a sense of certainty that was completely unexpected that I needed to buy this necklace: for me, but especially for you.

I of course cannot know your specific circumstances at all. I pray for Ukraine and its people every day, and somehow this morning it felt like God was saying, this daughter of mine needs to know that she is not alone. Go be with her. Share the love of her work with her out loud where she can hear it.

And so I bought it and am very grateful for the privilege of doing so. Thank you for making this. I will wear it with pride and love and much gratitude, and I wish you all my very best from across the world.

Such a beautiful letter I got back. It will stay with me a long, long time.

2 Comments so far
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Blessings on both of you.

Comment by Chris+S+in+Canada 07.22.23 @ 6:28 am

I’m sure it meant so much to her.

Comment by ccr in MA 07.23.23 @ 9:32 am

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