When I wear my favorite shoes on a Tuesday, that regular Tuesday is better. Shauna Niequist, Cold Tangerines

I have my grandmother’s pearls.

I grew up in the South with non-Southern parents, but a lot of Southern girl mannerisms made their way into my psyche regardless, and when I was in high school I decided I needed a strand of pearls. I didn’t get them for high school graduation as I had hoped, but one of the last times I visited my grandmother in college, she told us each we could begin picking things of hers that we wanted. And in what I had always thought of as her treasure trove of jewelry, we found a hopelessly tangled strand of pearls, and I laid claim to them. Southern pearls from my Yankee grandmother.

My mom took them and had a jeweler untangle and re-string them, but for whatever reason, my grandmother was adamant that I not have them before my college graduation. She made it to my wedding but not my commencement a month later, and it felt like a great ceremony when I got to put on her pearls that morning.

I was unfortunately never very close to my grandmother, who also happens to be my namesake. She lived in Connecticut and I in Mississippi, and there’s only so much of a childhood you can share that way. I always liked her, but she wasn’t a part of my daily life as so many of my friends’ grandmothers were. I was always sort of jealous of that. But I have my grandmother’s pearls, and that feels monumental to me. I think of her when I wear them, the things I never knew about her. Now that I’m an adult, I think I would have gotten to know her better. I would have enjoyed asking questions about her life and her experiences. She was a pretty cool lady, from what I gather. But instead I have her pearls.

I bought a t-shirt that has irregular cream-colored polka dots on it, and one day I felt inspired to wear my pearls with it. I had on jeans and flip flops and my grandmother’s pearls, and my coworker expressed that she should wear her pearls more often. You should, too. Because when you wear your grandmother’s pearls on a regular Tuesday, that regular Tuesday is better.

Laura Lindeman

Laura Lindeman