Celebrating A Shared Passion
It’s not always just life and death that I am commemorating in my work. Indeed, sometimes I am also celebrating a shared passion that existed between two loved ones.
Everyone grieves in their own way. Memories are very personal. What do you miss the most? Is it the shape of their face? The warmth of their embrace? Their presence filling a room? Specifically, do you miss the things you used to do together?
Their Shared Passion
Carley’s mother passed away in December 2019. In her very first email to me, she talked about how she and her mother were avid fans of the Geelong Cats. Their shared passion of this AFL team must have been weighing heavily on her heart for her to bring it up straight away. She was wondering if she could have something made for herself in blue and white, using her mother’s ashes. This would pay homage to both her mother, and celebrating a shared passion for the Cats. I wonder how Carley might have felt watching the Cats play their first game in the 2020 season, without her mum by her side. I imagine her mother’s missing presence must have felt strong that day.
Carley placed her order around the 6 year anniversary of the loss of my own grandma. I grew up without my mother, but my grandma raised me and was everything to me. I have missed my grandma every single day since she passed in 2013. Because of this, it did not feel like a coincidence that Carley shared her grief with me, at a time when I was also grieving my own loss. I felt instantly connected with Carley.
Carley’s ring was going to be unique. To begin with, I crafted a 14K white gold Empress ring for her. Carley’s mother’s ashes are set in the main gem of the ring, and coloured the gem lightly with pearl. Seven small genuine sapphires form the crown around the main gem. But Empress Rings are usually made with a diamond crown. This ring was different.
When the light hits this ring at exactly the right angle, the blue sapphires cast a blue illumination across the white gem, briefly changing the look of the whole ring and causing me to double check I was looking at the right ring!
“To say I am blown away by the white stone, would be an understatement. The colours in the ring are exactly that of Mum’s favourite football team and it has reflected her memory in more ways than I could have ever imagined”.
Holding Carley’s hand throughout the process made me feel like we were walking together through a bleary haze of grief. In being a part of healing Carley’s sadness, I also felt my own sadness lift. Crafting Carley’s ring was a wonderful experience.