Collection: The Joon Collection

This collection honors a mother, a wife, an aunt, a pediatrician, a sister, a daughter and a friend. This collection is made for Shaida. 

All proceeds go towards the education of her three beautiful children: Zarrin, Matin and Taj.

THE STORY BEHIND THE JEWELRY. 

***On another quick note, this platform is originally made to support my non-profit, RESPOND Against Violence. It is being used temporarily to host The Joon Collection but is not in anyway to represent that Shaida was a victim of violence. To learn more about the non-profit visit www.RESPONDagainstviolence.org or click "Home" at the top of the screen to shop the jewelry collection created for victims of violence***

This is the story behind the Joon Collection. A collection inspired by love, motherhood, doctoring, friendship, loss and commitment  to the future.

Shaida was a pediatrician, she dedicated her life to helping our children--now let us help her with her own.
I made her a promise and I intend to keep it. 

In the course of our conversations these last few months, I asked her to forgive herself to let go of the worry and to know we would all take care of things for her, in her memory.

The night before she passed, I whispered in her ear that I was taking her daughter to our house, to let her play, to have fun, to sleepover and that we would be loving her all night and all the next day. That it was OK, we would take care of her and that it was OK to go.

There have been two things that over the last year that Shaida has repeatedly brought up to me.

The first was her fear and guilt over leaving her family in a position where she would have financially drained them and left them in a vulnerable place after her death. She worried her children and her husband would be left suffering the financial burden she was leaving behind. Her kind, sweet, strong daughter, Zarrin and her two sweet twin baby boys that she worked so hard to bring into this world. 

She spoke of it as though her memory would be overwhelmed by the fact that she was not able to provide at the end of her life. 

She was driven to have a work-life balance. This led her to move from a demanding unpredictable schedule as a hospitalist to a more predictable schedule as a pediatrician elsewhere. She had just begun that position when the pain began that led to her disease. Her diagnosis fell in-between the months of transitioning to a new job where she had no life insurance coverage. 

She cried about this often, worried about it and feared this one legacy would be the burden her family would suffer over. Her fear was often discussed with tears and heartbreak and it was clear to me that part of what filled her struggle was the possible reality of the financial hole she would leave behind. 

Every single time we had this discussion, I assured her of two things. First, if she was dead, none of us will ever care about anything related to money. Second, that if she was this distraught and anxious about it—I promised her that I would do everything in my power to lift that burden after she was gone. 

But the reality is that the financial burden is real. She has three little children, one with Type 1 Diabetes, and a husband who has all but dropped everything to balance the last two years as she fought this fight. Cancer is cruel and it is expensive. God bless her sweet mother for taking on countless trips to Houston for treatment and her kind friend Armeen and his family for hosting her endlessly in their home away from home in Houston. She often told me how nice it was to not have to deal with hotels and what a gift it was to have a place to settle during treatment. 

The purpose of this jewelry and the funds created from purchasing it is to support this beautiful family and lift the stress, even in a small way, from worrying about the worry of funding their education. 

The second thing Shaida and I talked about over the last 6-months was her dream of this perfect piece of jewelry. Anyone who knows our Shaida knows that the woman is gorgeous, has style, has a makeup collection better than any Hollywood make-up artists... and when she sets her mind to something, she knows exactly what she wants.  In this case, she dreamed of a ring that had turquoise (to represent the November birth of Taj and Mateen) and opal and pink turquoise (to represent the October gift of Zarrin). In her head she had this ring designed and was on a hunt to find it.

Four months ago, in September of 2018, Shaida and I went to New York to visit with doctors. While we were there, we knew that we had to do one thing. We had to visit ABC Home & Carpet (well, and the big NYC Sephora store). Though we had never been together, we often talked about our mutual obsession with the store that was our version of heaven on earth. 

Despite the construction and craziness of navigating New York City in a wheel-chair—we made it there. While she relaxed on a beige couch working through some nausea… I was determined to find her a piece of jewelry that she could wear to fit this dream she had in her head. 

The folks at the jewelry counter listened to my story and worked with me to pull pieces that she might like. Eventually Shaida was able to come over and I told her that she could pick whatever piece of jewelry she wanted. Thanks to all the generous donations to fund this trip, I told her not to worry about price, that she needed to pick something she loved. 

We searched for something that had turquoise and opal and pink tourmaline. She tried on dozens of necklaces—always finding “just one thing” she would change for it to be Shaida-approved. Eventually, knowing that Zarrin favored her going with opal—she found a necklace with opal globes, wrapped in gold and a chain made of gun-metal. She wavered between this and a necklace with a watermelon tourmaline which she explained was supposed to support healing and protection. We bought the opal necklace and she wore it home, convinced that when we returned to Austin she would have a jeweler change out the gun metal chain for yellow gold. The woman was perfection and rightfully so, had expectations that things in her path would follow that lead. 

The trip itself was a gift to me. The gift of time. The ability to love, whole-heartedly and say all the things I would ever want to say. To touch her skin and hear her voice and ask the questions. During this trip she guided me on how I should properly be doing my eyebrow liner (and reprimanded my current approach to eyebrow care), telling me that I had gotten better over the last few months since I started to send her weekly selfies; listened to my endless accounts of how she taught me about friendship; held hands; navigated the frustrating reality of non-handicap people using the handicap stalls; I became an expert on opening and closing a wheelchair in and out of a taxi; went by my childhood home in Boston so I could show her where I learned how to properly develop a business plan for Lemonade a stand (Zarrin and Lyla often benefit from my developed skills in this respect); cried, laughed, hugged, shared and loved. 

On the drive home from the airport, she again started to cry. Telling me she worried and feared that she was going to leave her family in financial stress. 

Two days after we returned, she called to tell me that she thought she picked the wrong necklace. While she liked to opal, she couldn’t stop thinking about the watermelon tourmaline.

Personally, I think that the worried she had jinxed herself—not picking the necklace that might save her and instead defaulting to mommy instinct of making her daughter happy by picking the opal. She had already called ABC and they still had the other necklace. I told her I would handle it. I called ABC, had them send me the watermelon tourmaline and she has worn it ever since. Somehow in the week after I got it to her—she managed to switch out the rose gold chain with a yellow gold chain—because again, there was just “one little thing” that wasn’t right about it. She has worn it ever since. 

I want Shaida to know that this stone may not have saved her life, but it will protect all of us. It will help us heal, it will keep us strong and in moments of sadness it will remind us of her. 

About two months ago, I made the gemstone bracelet that included the watermelon tourmaline strung alongside all the birthstones of her family: turquoise for the boys, opal and pink tourmaline (and I found pink opals) for Zarrin, moonstone for Aaron and garnet for her. She wears one. I wear one. And now her friends and family can wear one. 

This morning, my first morning I woke up knowing that our best friend was no longer with us—I opened my mind (but not yet my eyes) and I touched the bracelet. I miss her. I already missed her as I watched her fall into this awful disease that took her from us. But I have gained a team of friendships—all birthed from her. These amazing people surround me and remind me of the gift she gave us all… the gift of friendship with her, between our daughters and between every person she has ever known. 

This jewelry is put together by her friends, over wine, over love, over tears but most importantly over friendship. We wear these pieces as we navigate this new world without her physical touch but with the memory of how she has touched our lives.

 

 

 

13 products
  • LIMITED EDITION: The Joon Bug (long)
    Regular price
    $450.00
    Sale price
    $450.00
  • Taji's Turquoise
    Regular price
    $350.00
    Sale price
    $350.00
  • The Healing Stone Necklace (round)
    Regular price
    $265.00
    Sale price
    $265.00
  • The Patterned Birthstone Necklace
    Regular price
    $265.00
    Sale price
    $265.00
  • The Balancing Necklace
    Regular price
    $225.00
    Sale price
    $225.00
  • The Healing Stone Necklace
    Regular price
    Sold out
    Sale price
    $225.00
  • The Birthstone Necklace
    Regular price
    $225.00
    Sale price
    $225.00
  • The Healing Bracelet
    Regular price
    $165.00
    Sale price
    $165.00