The sound told the story without my even having to look. My grandmotherâ€™s antique candlestick had fallen off the mantle on to the rock fireplace below. Glass hitting rock is never a good situation.
My immediate response was to kill my cat (the culprit in the situation). She was sitting on the rock – frozen – imitating innocence with all her might.
â€œCat!â€ I heard the noise escape from my mouth. Frantically, I searched for a weapon to rid me of the menace mimicking me from the chair. As soon as I turned my head, she was gone.
Instead of chasing down the cat, I found myself kneeling by the shards of glass. The pieces were so small and there were so many. Repair was not going to be an option. The sigh was deep as the memory of the day my grandmother gave me the gift washed over me.
â€œCan you fix it mom?â€ My two young boys had been summoned by the commotion.
â€œI donâ€™t think so.â€ The tears were beginning to escape the hold I had on them.
â€œCat!â€ This time the noise was from the mouth of my son. Apparently he had the same intentions that I had earlier.
â€œLeave her alone.â€ The soft calm of my voice surprised even me. My son turned and looked at me.
â€œBut, your candlestick.â€
I pulled him to me and looked him directly in the eyes. Brushing back the runaway twig of hair from his face I found myself saying, â€œDid you know that candlestick was the last gift my grandmother gave me before she died?â€
His gentle heart brought tears to his own eyes that matched mine, but the man in him struggled to hold the tears back. He just nodded.
â€œWhere is my grandmother now?â€ A soft smile had found its way to my face.
â€œSheâ€™s with Jesus.â€ He rubbed his eyes with both fists.
â€œDo you think that breaking this candlestick has changed that?â€
He shook his head.
Looking back down at the shattered candlestick hurt, but it was, after all, only a candlestick. â€œHoney, its just stuff. The real value lies in my memories, and my memories remain intact.â€
Sometimes in the hectic life we lead we forget the value of people, memories, and love. The material possessions seem to take up all of our time and energy. The next time the kids break a vase, the husband knocks over a lamp, or the cat ruins a prices heirloom, try to remember where the real value lies.