Saturday, December 5, 2009

A Pearl is Beauty Made Out of Adversity

The gemstone that is the pearl has been valued for centuries due to its beauty and the effort taken by nature to create it.  A natural pearl, which forms without any human intervention, is incredibly rare.  Hundreds of oysters can be gathered and opened just to find one pearl.  Due to these properties, the word "pearl" is now often used to describe something that is very rare, valuable, and admirable. 

The pearl also symbolizes a journey with a special significance that I have adopted into my writing.  The pearl represents the ability to overcome adversity.  Just think about it for a moment.  The myth is that a beautiful pearl starts with a single grain of sand--a foreign object that is seen as an irritant to the hosting oyster.  In order to protect itself, the oyster creates a coating over the grain until it becomes smooth.  What a great concept.  A pearl is the creation of beauty that results from a painful environment.

In my new release, Kendra's Pearl, a young girl must create her own path and find happiness while living in a world that is filled with abuse, neglect, and depression.  Kendra must use the "irritation" to develop her life into something beautiful.

The metaphor also plays out through Kendra's mother, who is named Pearl.  It is largely through Pearl's rage and irrational behavior that Kendra learns the lessons that will help her to create a beautiful life for herself.  Kendra needs to decide if she is going to remain that grain of sand that she seems to be in her mother's eyes, or if she is going to become a valuable gem.

I imagine that some of you have been through situations that ultimately refined you into a pearl.  When we can take heartache and turn it into a thing of beauty, we exhibit strength and an ability to thrive.  I hope that you will read one example of such a transformation in my book Kendra's Pearl.  I look forward to your feedback and hearing if you see a similar metaphor in your own life.