These two necklaces were both gifted to me within the past couple of years, and they are each strong connections to the women in my family and to the two most important women in my life: my mother and my grandmother.
The pearl pendant with the gold chain belonged to my paternal great-grandmother, who immigrated from Poland near the turn of the 20th century. She passed the necklace along to my grandmother, who wore the necklace throughout her life and recently gifted it to me, as she has numerous items that she treasures (her Scrabble game, her mother's menorah, and a tortoise shell butterfly clip, to name a few). My grandma suffers from Parkinson's disease, and the last near-decade has been an immensely difficult one for her and for us. With her constant pain and discomfort and my grandpa nearing the age of 93, she is keenly aware of her mortality and wants to see me enjoy these gifts while she can.
The pearl strand necklace belonged to my maternal grandmother, whom I never met. She passed away when my mom was a teenager, and, not surprisingly, this had a huge impact on my mom. My mom has faced a large number of struggles since then, and though she's small in stature, her resilience knows no bounds. From time to time, she'll tell me how much my grandma would have loved me and recalls the amazing woman that she was. I can only imagine the latter, but when my mom gave me my grandma's necklace, I felt a new connection to her through my mom -- a lineage bonded in strength.
– Rebecca Diamond