Bloganuary – Day 19

Write about something mysterious.

–⋅ o ♥ o ⋅–

(Today, I’ve edited a story I shared seven years ago.)

How a pulled thread fixed a broken heart.

When my mother passed away, amongst the items of jewellery my father gave me was a pair of earrings.  I loved those earrings and remembered how dear they were to my mother. 

I wore them with pride – a small and constant reminder of her. I could feel them jangling in my ears and thought of my mother every time my hand reached up and played with them, which was often.

One morning while putting on my make-up, getting ready to head off to work, I noticed my right ear lobe was devoid of adornment.  I’d dressed for work in the dark not wanting to wake my husband who’d been working night shifts at the time. After putting the earrings in my ears, I’d gone to the kitchen to put the kettle on before heading into the bathroom. 

I retraced my steps, small torch in hand, but couldn’t see the earring anywhere. I frantically undressed thinking it may have been caught up in my clothing, but alas it wasn’t.

Devastated, I removed the other earring and headed off to work.

When I arrived home that afternoon, I turned half the house upside down – the half I’d been in before noticing the earring missing.  I ransacked the cupboard where I kept my jewellery box, I vacuumed the carpet and sifted the contents of the vacuum bag, I cried, I pulled my hair – then I cried some more, but no matter what I did, nor where I looked, I couldn’t find that missing earring.

Heartbroken, I placed the remaining treasure in my jewellery box with a silent promise to my mother that one day I would find its partner.

Time passed and I stopped looking.  Tucked away, in the back corner of my jewellery box, the earring became forgotten, the fate of its partner no longer the focus of my attention and another pair of earrings were elevated to the status of favoured daily lobe adornment.

It would be five years before a bizarre series of events bought the earring back to the forefront of my attention.

–⋅ o ♥ o ⋅–

On a bright, and sunny winter’s day, Dean and I found ourselves playing tourists in Sydney.  We were there for the weekend and Dean wanted to retrace the footsteps of his youth and visit Taronga Zoo. 

As we walked around the enclosures, he pulled a thread on his shorts and a button fell off. Not just any button, a large one, one I thought I would never be able to match.  So I send him scurrying off after the button and it was placed in the pocket of my jumper for safekeeping.

I promised I’d sew it back on when we returned home to Brisbane.

Dean walked around for the rest of the day with the button fastener open above the zipper on his shorts. It’s a bit funny to think about now.

When we did arrive home, I completely forgot about the rescued button and promptly placed our clothes in the washing machine without checking any pockets. Who does that anyway? 

The missing button was only remembered when I was folding the washing and I can only guess that if the button had still been in my pocket when I loaded the machine, my washing machine gratefully accepted it as payment for services rendered.

At least I had a secret stash of buttons for just such emergencies. 

My button stash was a sad and sorry state of affairs, nothing like the cookie jar sized bottle my mother had had when I was a little girl.  Her collection contained buttons of every size, shape, colour, and style.  There was one fit for any purpose, be it shirt, skirt, waistline or sleeve cuff. 

My collection resided in a little crystal vase and consisted solely of spares buttons that had been supplied with new clothing.  Those revered little ‘extras’ fixed to price tags or washing instructions in tiny little zip-locked plastic packets. 

But surely, somewhere in that vase, there would be a button big enough but not too fancy, and suitable for above the zipper on a pair of men’s shorts.

Scissors and thread at hand, I upended the contents of that little vase onto the kitchen table.  Some buttons were still in their plastic packets, others were not, and I spread my pitiful collection across the table to better assess their suitability.

As I did, something shiny caught my eye and I hurriedly pushed the packets aside to get a closer look.

I picked it up and felt my blood run cold as I looked at a little earring, a little love knot dangling from a shepherds hook. 

It was my mother’s earring.

How did it get into my little vase of buttons? I knew I’d put it away for safekeeping. 

I quickly went to put it back where it belonged and, as I opened my jewellery box, I couldn’t comprehend what I was looking at – the other earring, still tucked away inside, exactly where I’d placed it five years ago.

My Mother’s Earrings

The joy at finding this missing treasure was overwhelming. I remember sobbing uncontrollably and my heart being racked with pain. 

All these years and both earrings were within six inches of each other.

I have thought about this mysterious series of events for years, and from that day to this, I still have no idea how that earring came to be amongst a collection of spare buttons in my little crystal vase. But I did thank my husband for pulling that thread on his trousers as we walked around a zoo more than 1,000 kilometres from where we lived.

–⋅ o ♥ o ⋅–

I believe everything happens for a reason. All of this was meant to unfold, each event played out exactly as it was meant to, each step, one after the other, so I could find my mother’s earring.

The weather in Sydney during winter was warmer than normal allowing Dean to wear a pair of shorts the day we went to the zoo. 

He was meant to pull a thread on his shorts that caused the button to fall off. 

I was meant to put my jumper in the wash without emptying the pockets so I’d go looking for another button. 

I was meant to upend the contents of my little crystal vase where I stowed spare buttons.

That vase lived in the back left-hand corner of a shelf in my cupboard and I still cannot explain how the earring came to be there after I missed putting the hook through the hole in my right ear lobe.

I still wear my mother’s earrings and my little vase still holds a trove of spare buttons.

–⋅ o ♥ o ⋅–

Read more about Bloganuary here.

Author: Clare

Ever-expanding one star at a time, my cosmos is a galaxy of thoughts and creativity where you can find poetry, short stories, photography and so much more.

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