If someone asked me the one item that epitomizes class and understated elegance on a woman, it would have to be the simple strand of pearls. I wear mine almost every day. They make me feel like I'm just a little bit dressed up... even when I'm just going to the grocery store or running another errand. I see others wearing their strand and I notice, "They're in the I can't live without my pearls club too." I love the perfect roundness and smoothness of each one. I love the fact that they start out as an imperfection. An inconvenience. An irritation. And then, by sheer miracle, that piece of sand (or other fragment) goes through a metamorphosis to become a precious and priceless thing of beauty.
Throughout high school and college, I either wore fake or my mother's strand (but only on special occasions). I can remember Mama clasping her's around my neck before my debutante balls. Wearing those, as well as her kid leather elbow-length gloves, made me feel a princess.
Finally, I received my own. One gift my parents gave me when I graduated from college was a exquisite 18 inch strand of pure elegance. A few other girls got cars. A few got trips. But I got pearls. Finally. I had my own to play with or finger whenever I was talking... or flirting! I didn't have to borrow for special occasions... or plain old everyday. This June baby (whose birthstone is the pearl!) was in heaven.
Sometimes I think about those cars that were given as graduation gifts twenty years ago. Do those girls know where they are now? Probably not. But I know where my pearls are... circling my neck and will be for the next twenty years. Because... I can't live without my pearls.