Its sharp, luminous edges glint in the stage lights. The small crystal box is presented to graduating seniors of the Portland Symphonic Girlchoir at their final concert. I have yet to receive it; but it has been in my mind’s eye since joining as a shy eight year old.
The box stands for perseverance and countless hours of rehearsal. Appearing empty, it is overflowing. It is the resting place of memories: a fire alarm going off mid-concert, serenading the other passengers returning from China, performing for senior citizens, and creating lasting friendships. The box is a testament to collaboration among women from whom I received guidance and support.
It is not about the physical beauty of the object. It is about everything for which it represents and for those who enabled me to become who I am. It will be among the most meaningful gifts of my life.