A few weeks ago, I was browsing in a beautiful boutique near my home. This is something I often do when my creative juices have run dry or I have cabin fever. Often, they are the same thing.
Anyway, there was this necklace. It lassoed my attention: goldy-colured, lotus shaped. And for some reason, incredibly compelling. I looked at it. I didn’t ask the store owner to to take it out of the cabinet for me.
Just looking, you know?
But I couldn’t get that damn necklace out of my head. Couldn’t figure out why. I don’t wear gold, I don’t wear big necklaces because I don’t like the weight around my neck.
So I went back in to the store, and asked to see that necklace.
Do you know? It was made by a company called Mettle. They recycle Khmer Rouge bombshell metal into jewelry. Fair trade jewelry.
On their swing tag is the definition of ‘mettle’:
Courage and fortitude; the courage to carry on after hardship.
Oh. My. God.
These people are doing, with their necklaces, what I hope to do with my yoga and, by example, my life.
To show people that, if you are brave, if you find the strength of your own heart, there is hope. From awful, violent beginnings, a lotus can blossom. Fair trade businesses can arise.
Even more inspiring: the models who appear in the Mettle catalogue are a group of Ethiopian refugees who have gone on to start their own modelling agency. They are doing wildly well in the Melbourne fashion scene! Mettle indeed.
Proof, if ever we needed it, that we can hold a space for hope where before there was just hurt.
Mettle. Courage. Bravery. Hope.
PS: Yes, I bought the necklace. I’ve been wearing it every day, because I what it represents is so compelling.