When thinking of a prompt of “Gemstone” today, my mind went back in time to when I was a kid. I was perfectly fascinated with all types of shiny stones. I thought they simply must possess some sort of magic. My cousin and I used to wander alongside the train tracks looking for quartz crystals. It was like finding a bit of gold, or something equally precious. I would even make little silent wishes while holding one of those crystals. Some of them actually came true, but there’s no proof that it was caused by a lump of quartz. Like most wishes in life, the real magic comes from within us. But that didn’t stop me from wanting to believe in something just a bit more theatrical. I remember watching the movie The Dark Crystal, which featured a powerful gem that once provided balance to the universe. So, yeah, maybe that was it, now that I think about it. Yet admittedly, I never found anything quite that incredible on the side of the railroad tracks, but I adored whatever little gem I could find. In truth, anything can become special when our hearts make that decision. But, rarity is the thing that can make something truly precious.
I was born in April so my birthstone is said to be a diamond. When I was in high school, this was problematic when going to purchase a class ring as a white piece of glass just wasn’t that interesting to me. I opted for a blue sapphire instead, or it’s cheaper visual equivalent. And, prior to the 20th century, this was indeed an option for April. I could have followed the tropical zodiac, but this was a bloodstone as I was a born a week too early for a sapphire. But I figured it was close enough and indeed, blue was my favorite color at the time so that won out. Truly, I’ve always found all of those charts to be equal parts confusing and fascinating. As for the ring, it was worn for about a year and then placed in a box. I’ve actually no idea which box it’s in now so that will no doubt be a lovely discovery some day in the future. When something once adored becomes a memory, it only has to be discovered once again to renew that feeling of wonder. Whether or not it will actually feel like a needful thing again is anyone’s guess, but the memory alone is something worth cherishing.
Having never worn jewelry much, I don’t have a lot of experience with gemstones. Except for that time in college when I thought piercing an ear would be cool and left the mall with a fake diamond stud in one. That lasted only 6 months. This had nothing to do with changing trends, but simply my usual lack of patience for adding an additional step before properly starting my day. After forgetting to put the earring back in for several days in a row, I eventually forgot about it entirely. Only the now microscopic indentation on my ear would ever betray the fact that I ever wore one. I did wear cufflinks for a time, as I ended up with several shirts from designers who thought this was trendy. It wasn’t. It was just a pain in the ass, so I stopped that as well. I guess I’ve learned that for an object to be considered truly important, it now comes down to me and me alone. I’m not swayed by what’s “in” as I’m far too old to bother with any of that nonsense now. It’s a great feeling indeed. One much more like my childhood self, when even a rock could become something exceptional with enough imagination. And that’s how I choose to live my life today, always on the lookout for wonder in the world around me and finally understanding the true magic of precious things.
About the Doodlewash
Da Vinci Paint Co.: Gold Ochre, Quinacridone Red, Terra Cotta, Cobalt Turquoise and Cobalt Blue. Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with sepia ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book. Want to purchase a print of this doodlewash? Send me a note with a link to this post, and I’ll add it to my shop!