Well over a year ago, when I was in a period of deep doubt about everything I was experiencing that was beyond logical explanation (i.e., I would argue with myself endlessly about whether those were signs or just coincidence, happenstance), my sister said she would “talk to Mark about sending something so radical I would KNOW it was from him, like not just dimes, but mercury dimes.”
I’d thought about that a lot over the ensuing months. I wondered what the odds were, of finding mercury dimes (manufacturing ended in the mid-1940’s) just laying around. I told Mark about it, too, but I felt like maybe that was asking too much, being too bossy. And OH MY GOSH, what do I really really believe??? That Mark is carrying change around in his pockets?! Digging coins up out of the ground? C’mon, Emily. Get a grip.
About two months ago, I was mowing the lawn (something Mark used to do), lost in sweaty thought, when I heard someone say my name. I glanced around – hello? – but didn’t see anyone. I went back to my mowing, and then I heard it louder – Emily! – and glanced to my right and there was my friend and neighbor, Nancy, about 2 feet away. I just about jumped out of my skin.
She was holding a small mesh gift bag.
“I’ve been wanting to get you something special with coins for a very long time. I finally found an Etsy vendor who makes these.” And she handed me the bag. Inside were earrings made with 3 pence Rabbit coins (from Ireland – very lovely, as Nancy has Irish background), with beautiful little natural pearls dangling below. I was very moved by her thoughtfulness – she’s just an incredibly generous person. And really, I’m inordinately grateful to have friends who know about the coin thing and don’t think I’m completely insane. Or at least they are super duper nice to the Lunatic Across the Street. Pat, pat.
As I admired the earrings, she produced a second mesh bag. “I have another pair for you, too. These aren’t the Eisenhower dimes you find, but I thought these were nice, too.”
Mercury dime earrings.
Nancy is the one who “shared” my dream about Mark just a few months back – the dream where I had handed Mark (!!! Mark who showed up for a visit!!) off to Nancy to chat while I rushed off to complete the usual tasks on my list at that time (checking on my MIL, getting her laundry, etc)…and then I got stuck in the elevator and couldn’t get back. Nancy dreamed about Mark that same night, and in her dream they were just hanging out, sitting and chatting. Perhaps this was one of the things they talked about while they hung out, waiting for me, in the conversation she could not quite recall upon awakening. And no, she didn’t know about the whole mercury dime conversation, one more prayer from my sister’s heart.
Even better: my sister’s 60th birthday was approaching. Although we’d celebrated on the trip to CA, I did not want to let the actual day slip by without something more to commemorate her milestone. I’d been mulling it over in my basement for several days, and had asked God to help me find something small and perfect.
Now both of us have mercury dime earrings (all 4 coins are from 1944…) and a dawning recognition that God really does work in many mysterious ways, and most often through our love for one another.