Two weeks ago my youngest sister sent my other sister and me a picture of a bracelet in a group text. It seemed like an ordinary bracelet, I didn’t really look at it but I thought it was cute. She wanted each one of us to get one so that we matched. I’m always up for a best friend/sister set so, of course, I was in.
Last week four bracelets arrived in the mail. One for my mother, one for me, one for my middle sister Elisa and one for my youngest sister Gianna.
Each one of us now had a lokai bracelet and I still had no idea what it meant. When it arrived, each bracelet came with a little tag. It opened like a booklet; one side was blue and the other was a shade of gray. I didn’t really care much, I just liked having each one of us match. The blue side had a white dot and the gray side had a black dot, something about water and mud. Gianna kept saying the little slogan that was inside, “Sometimes you’re on top of the world. Stay humble. Sometimes you’ve hit a low. Stay hopeful.” I liked it.
I decided to wear it for the last few days.
The bracelet has a number of clear beads with one white bead on one side and a black bead opposite it. The white dot contained water from Mt Everest, the highest point on earth, “sometimes you’re on top of the world.” The black dot on the bracelet holds mud from the Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth. “sometimes you’ve hit a low.” The clear beads symbolize each person’s own story. The remind us to keep moving forward, and that “clarity is key in times of joy and sadness,” says the website.
Stay hopeful, stay humble, but most of all, keep going.
Today, after searching the entire east side of Manhattan (ok, I only went like 10 blocks) to find an ice cream truck, I came across a boy begging for money. I asked him how old he was while I fished out a dollar. He said he was 23, his birthday was last Tuesday. Sometimes things happen and you get caught up in the money, power, wealth, and lifestyle you think you want. And if you’re lucky, when you think you’re on top, someone is there to bring you back down to where you’re supposed to be, “stay humble.” I wish I would’ve sat there with him. I could have learned all about him, who he was, where he came from, how he got to where he was. I don’t even know his name.
All I know is that in a sick turn of events, I could’ve been this kid. He was my age. He was nice, and he was sitting on the corner of 45th street and 3rd ave with a cardboard sign and an empty cup in front of him. Before I walked up to him I saw him make the sign of the cross after someone gave him money. I really do hope that he gets what he prayed for.