My mother, who gave me the childhood nickname "mushka", passed away. She was the most beautiful woman I'd ever met and I was brokenhearted over the stories and wisdom that had passed away with her, untold. Right then and there, I began a blog to my own future mushkas, filling it with every photo and tale and lesson I could think of. It was a love letter, a way to keep this journey that God had specifically give me alive, and I was passionate about telling it. I'd encourage everyone I met to start a blog, to tell their story, knowing that whatever path they'd been on had a purpose and was worth sharing. We are created for community and there's no better way to build that than by being raw and real, by opening up and saying "this is where I've been and this is where I hope to go." There's that C.S. Lewis quote that says "Friendship is born at that moment when one man says to another: 'What! You too?'" and I clung to that idea, knowing that true relationship would be found when we allowed ourselves to knock down walls and open up.
"Dear Mushka" switched and became a jewelry brand, seeking to raise money to bring home our first and adopted child. It very literally became a love letter to our mushka as I worked over each necklace and said a prayer for his or her little life. Likewise, the idea of women telling their stories via blog transferred into women telling their stories in a new way. I recognized that what we chose to put on everyday was a personal decision; we were laying it close to our hearts or across our wrists and letting it say something. Why not let it tell our stories? I learned so much about running a business during this time and, though not without mistakes, found my small voice.
I began memorizing one promise from scripture a week and starting realizing how it impacted my actions as well as my thoughts. As I'd work on a necklace I'd think "Am I crazy? This looks like Isaiah 43:2!" and then I'd find myself thinking of that verse as I wore the jewelry around. It became a natural conversation starter with both friends and strangers, as they'd casually compliment the jewelry and I'd casually mention the inspiration behind it. The most important thing in my life was my relationship with Jesus, but I wasn't always great at speaking the truths I knew to other women; imagine my delight when I suddenly had an easy and approachable opener.
Deuteronomy 6:6+ constantly swam around in my head and I knew that the third love letter was being born. We are to put the sweet instructions and truths we've been given everywhere; we are to teach them to our children and bind them on our necks and share them with others. That is where true joy is found and so Dear Mushka began attaching a corresponding scripture card to each jewelry item. The "plume" necklace came with Psalm 91:4, the "path" necklace with Proverbs 3:5-6. The cards were created to sit against a bathroom mirror or to be taped next to a computer screen so that the words could sink deep into our hearts and then flow out of our mouths as we wore the jewelry.
Our stories- the one's we've been given by the Creator of the World are unique and valuable and worth sharing. But there is a bigger story worth telling... the story of God's greatness and glory, of his love and devotion. If we don't include this story as we do life together, we're doing one another a disservice. And to tell it well, we have to know it well.
We're doing this thing! We're memorizing scripture, letting it sink deep in our hearts so that it flows out of our mouths as others casually take note of the jewelry. We're sharing the greatest love story the world will ever know. Together. I'm so glad you're here.