For my sixteen birthday, my Dad, who was not living with my Mom and me, gave me a pair of square fourteen carat, princess cut, diamond earring! It was also made of gold and to say that I was elated, would be putting it mildly. My shoulder length braided black hair and fat cheeks danced in harmony with the studs and although my eyes were naturally bright, somehow they became brighter and I looked beautiful. I was never going to take them off, and I said this much to my Mom.
“I am glad that you like your gift, Sweetie,” she said, “but you cannot wear them to school.”
“But Mom,” I begun.
“It's not just me Sweetheart, you know the school rules about wearing jewellery.”
“But some of the kids still wear jewellery and no one say anything to them.” I protested, turning my face from side to side and smiling at my reflection in the mirror.
“Well, you are not going to be one of those kids and come on, let's go before you're late for your own birthday celebration.” She said, turning the lock on the front door.
My birthday was on Friday, and the following Monday, after replacing the earrings the night before into the small black velvet box they came in, I took them out and placed them into a tissue. I then placed the tissue at the bottom of my red and black flowered backpack. At school, in the washroom, as the smell of Pine Sol inflamed my nose and caused me to sneeze, I put on my diamond earnings.
Later that day, on my way home from school, I was sitting in my Mom's red 2001 Ford Station Wagon, when she stopped behind a blue mini van because of the red traffic light, and she said,
“And be sure your sin will find you out.”
My heart skipped a beat, then it begun to pound against my chest as though it wanted to be set free from its cage.
“What... what did you say?” I squeaked, looking down at my clasp hands in my lap.
“There, the mini van in front of us, the sticker above the left light.” Mom said, indicating where she was talking about with her chin. “It says, “and be sure your sins will find you out.”
As I slowly lifted my eyes to look at the sticker, like a snail, my right hand travelled to my ear. It was empty. I took a deep breath and slowly letting it out, my heart, like receding waves of the sea, withdrew its pounding, and I closed my eyes.
The following day and for the next two weeks, I continued to wear my diamond earrings at school.
Midway through the third week of wearing them, as I was walking to the washroom a student, who was standing in the hallway, said to another student:
“Then the guy, wagging his finger at me said in a stern voice, “children should obey their parents.” Then, they erupted into laughter.
Suddenly a stomach ache ceased me and the smile on my face disappeared.
Later that day, as Mom and I drove home from work and school, I turned in my seat to look at her and asked,
“Mom, have you ever done something wrong, and in the most unusual ways, it seems as though God was saying to you, “repent and stop it?”
“Yes.” Mom said, taking her eyes from the road for a second to glance at me. “It's as though He drops a drip of water, one by one, on our hearts, to bring us to repentance.”
“Yes, that's exactly what I mean.” I said.
“Mom,” I continued after a moment's silence inside of the car, “I have something to tell you.”
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