For Letitia

I have learned a lot about myself in the last month and a half or so. Lessons that I thought that I had already learned from previous losses. Lessons I didn't think I needed to be taught, again. Then my beautiful mother left this world and mine blew apart. Far further than I could ever have anticipated. I thought, at first that I could just take a little time, then pick up and carry on, much as usual. Ha! Laughs life, laughs fate. Turns out, what has been needed is not only time to grieve, to mourn, but to realign, to find my new axis. That process takes time, I am allowing it. Following the natural course I need to take to move forward and pick up. I'm feeling ready to take first steps, methinks.

Letitia Ellsworth was my mother. She was my kindred spirit, my touchstone, my best and closest friend. She was the one person who understood me like no one else, who knew me on a level that no other human being ever could or ever would. I miss her so much. Sometimes it is so strong that I can't breathe. Sometimes I forget... For a crazy moment... I pick up my phone, scroll through my contacts list and get excited to call my mom. Then I remember and am blown away, again. I think that I should delete the contact to remind myself, to move on but I can't bring myself to do it, yet.

Hoarders: Contact List Edition.

Did I just say that? Inappropriate. Yet, oddly therapeutic.

One of the things I wanted to do to honor my mother was a special manicure and post it here in my blog. My mother would actually come and read here, from time to time. Surprising as hell, if you knew my mother. While she had an appreciation of the girlier aspects of life, she was not into the whole get made up and polished thing. She had no use for beauty and polish blogs but she was proud of mine and would swing by, check up on my latest work and then gush at me. It made me feel good. Gobsmacked, but good.

For this manicure, I was inspired by my mother's love of garnets, her favorite gemstone. I tried a lot of different polish combinations on a nail wheel before I finally came up with a layering technique that I feel evokes the red of the stone and the fire deep within the facets of the stone.

I started with a coat of Cover Girl Glosstinis in Rogue Red, a coat of Color Club Snow-Flakes, then a coat of Cover Girl Glosstinis in Violet Flicker and Sation Garnet Red. Topped off with Seche Vite.

I was pretty happy with it and I think that Mother would have liked it, too.





I think that this layered combo looks kind of like garnets. The glass fleck in the Cover Girl polishes and the flakies in the Color Club Snow-Flakes look like facets and fire deep in the gemstone the Sation Garnet Red is a sheer jelly but pigmented enough that one coat topped the under layers, perfectly, giving that deep garnet colour yet letting the sparkly goodness shine through.

Okay, so. I think I'm back. I hope that you'll forgive the all over the place nature of this particular post. It isn't my usual fare.

Just click Publish, Erika. It's time.

25 comments

  1. I'm really sorry to hear about your loss. This is a very touching post. Mothers are amazing creatures - angels, really, put on earth by God to bring a little bit of heaven to this planet. Oh, and that is a very beautiful mani. I think your mom will see it somehow and feel proud. Sending thoughts and prayers your way.

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  2. Beautifully written post and beautifully executed manicure. I can feel the love that went into the composition of both. I'm so sorry for your loss.

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  3. I am so sorry about the loss of your mom. :(

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  4. well I have tried and tried to comment so if it double posts, I am really sorry. I just wanted to say your post is just perfection. The love. The writing. The gesture. The sentiment. All of it. I'm so very sorry for your loss, Erika. You can truly feel your love come through and it's just wonderful. I'm glad you're here. And the manicure is stunning. =)

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  5. SUCH a gorgeous shade! And very touching dedication!

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  6. Erika, so glad to see you and your gorgeous nails. We've missed you! This mani is truly special, and I can tell how much love you put into it! It's beautiful, and your Mom would have loved it! <3 xoxo

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  7. You know...this blog almost sounded like what I would write about my mom...except while farmers were her birthstone she didn't much like them. but I love them because they were her birthstone. I am singing at Mass tomorrow night...and all I have been able to think of today is how I wish she could be there. so your blog post about your mom kind of helped me tonight. and I thank you.

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  8. Garnets. my mom had a weird sense of humor and I think autocorrect would have been her favorite thing! It fits her humor! And I forgot.to also say that I like the manicure!

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  9. You've touched my heart. I missed your posts and I'm happy to see them again. This mani is so touching. I hope that with time you'll feel better and better.

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  10. Thank you so much, Marcia. <3 I have missed blogging, it just took me a while to bring myself back. This post sat in my editor for a long time. I am beginning to feel a little better, it does take time, I am allowing it to happen as it will. :)

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  11. Mia, (((hugs))) I am happy that this post helped you. When you sing, your mother will be with you in your heart, in your voice, in your intent. let her love flow through you and into the air and feel it. <3

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  12. Thank you, Amber. I have missed blogging and interacting with all of you! I just needed some time to go into my shell, I guess. It was healing. It is good to be poking my nose out and coming back into the world, again and I am so happy to be seeing all of you, again. :D Thank you so much for your kind words, they touch me more than you can ever know. XO

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  13. Your comment published perfectly! :) Thank you so much for your kind words and your condolences. <3 I am so happy to be back. The time away was healing, I guess I needed it. :) I am so glad that the manicure turned out well, I wanted to honor my mother with something worthy.

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  14. This was a beautiful tribute to your mother, and I'm touched by your beautiful garnet manicure.

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  15. Thank you so much for your lovely words. :)

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  16. Your mani is almost as beautiful as your words.

    I understand not deleting. I lost my Dad in 5/05. He's still on my contact list. I just...can't delete him.

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  17. What a LOVELY tribute to your mom, both written and mani. I dread the day I lose my mom - she doesn't always understand me, but she loves me unconditionally. It will be so difficult. But until then, I will cherish my time with her. Thank you for reminding me...

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  18. Thank you so much for your kind words and for understanding.


    (((for you))) For the loss of your dad. <3

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  19. Erika, what a beautiful tribute, in words and mani. It made the pangs of missing my mom, my best friend so strong. I'm so sorry for your loss.

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