| A Gift Passed Along |


It was harder than it sounds. I didn’t feel it. And I wanted to feel it, and I wanted my kids to feel it

My husband gave me a gift this Chanukah. Around here gifts are usually books, but this one came in a thick paper gift bag, embossed in gold, with rope handles. Inside the bag was a small black velvet box. Inside the box was a pair of gold and diamond earrings.

At first I wore them only for Shabbos. But… they were really so pretty, so sometimes I wore them during the week also. Just, like, when I needed a boost. Like the Monday a couple weeks before Purim, when I had to take the kids for costumes, and buy mishloach manos supplies, and drop off and pick up the kids from various Morahs and babysitters, and other stories.

When I finally got back home, I was wearing only one earring.

I shook out my coat, I brushed through my sheitel. I turned the house upside down, I turned the car inside out, I retraced my steps, I called all the people and places I had seen and visited that day. I was sure it would turn up.

But it didn’t.

Every time someone left the house I would remind them to look out for my earring, every day when I dropped off the baby at Morah I asked if she had found my earring. I walked around the house looking down, I talked to people while my eyes traveled everywhere in the room. I looked under the beds, under the car seats, in the laundry basket, in the same places again and again and again.



At some point it sank in that my kids were watching Mommy lose it over an earring. I was teaching them, right then, what to do when things go wrong (they think I’m an adult because I’m taller than them). So I started saying “Gam zu l’tovah” and “Hashem please help me” and “Hashem can do anything” and “Everything Hashem does is good for me.”

It was harder than it sounds. I didn’t feel it. And I wanted to feel it, and I wanted my kids to feel it. It became a whole project: continuing to look for the earring, while believing that Hashem can do anything, while accepting that any outcome was for my own ultimate good. Whew. Who knew that a lost earring could be so intense?

On Thursday I got a phone call from my babysitter’s granddaughter. She was at her my babysitter’s house, and someone had knocked on the door: they had found an earring in the street nearby and brought it to the closest house to see if someone from that household had lost it. She had happened to be in the house earlier that week and had overheard me ask (and ask, and ask) if they had found my earring, so even though her grandmother wasn’t actually home at the time, she knew whose it might be. She was right, it was mine. Whole and glowing, not a diamond missing, even though it had been kicked around in the street for four days.

My husband gave me a gift and then G-d gave it back to me. I wear those earrings every day now, and whatever is happening around me, I touch the earring and remind myself that Hashem is on top of every detail. It is a greater gift now than it was before: a gold and diamond reminder for me, and my kids, of Hashem’s ever-present love.

Shaina King lives in Lakewood with her husband, children and pet computer.

(Originally featured in A Gift Passed Along, Pesach 5780)

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