Ukrainians were the most religiously persecuted people of the 20th century. Churches were made into museums, speaking Ukrainian was forbidden, having a mass was against the law and having a religious artifact of any kind could get you shot on sight.
My grandmother was deeply religious, laced with some mysticism. When my grandfather told her they'd be escaping, she risked the lives of all of them by secretly carrying an icon. This was no random religious artifact! This icon had been in the family for over 100 years. It had always been passed down to the first daughter of the eldest daughter which meant it was now my mother's. At this time my mother was only 9 years old when they fled their homeland eventually making it to the USA.
In time my mother married and the story goes….
As a child, my religious grandmother taught me about my intuitive self, about dreams and that “dreams can deliver a message”. Pay attention to your dreams, she told me.
These pendants are born from a dream, a message, one that is deep and profound to me. The message speaks to my life's journey, of love and family.
The first is Deer Mother
I love all the seasons and the changes they bring. After the frantic pace of summer and fall, I welcome the cocooning quality of winter. It's a time of rest. A time of quiet as snow falls and we are forced to slow down and to stay home. This is Deer Mother, Winter solstice. She is the “life giving” mother. She led her herd through their winter migration. She was a revered spiritual figure symbolizing fertility, motherhood and rebirth.
Argentium silver, Adularia moonstone surrounded by flush set diamonds and Abyssinian blue chalcedony.
The second is family, the sages, the past, present and future.
My family, the women of my family.
The women whose shoulders I stand on. They totally embraced their femininity, but not in the weak way our society likes to portray women. Rather they were strong, opinionated women who were comfortable in their skin. They suffered immeasurable hardships that they not only survived, but they thrived as a result of them! They acted in ways that were counter societal, but that was the best decision made for themselves and their families at that moment!
I'm so honored to have their DNA!
Spessartite Garnet, Chrysoprase, argentium silver.
The third is Saraswati. The guardian. She is the goddess of intelligence, consciousness and cosmic knowledge. Her watercourse of knowledge “dispelled all the abysmal darkness of ignorance from the universe”. She is often dressed in white or yellow silk wearing a string of pearls. She symbolizes purity and she is the patron of the arts and sciences.
Opal, South Sea golden pearl, argentium silver.