This first memory was written by me, Norma, on May 18, 2007. It is called: “R is for Robyn.”
Robyn Petra … according to baby name books, the meaning of these two names together is a bright shining stone. When I think of a bright shining stones, what comes to mind? Agates of golden and reddish and even jet-black hues reflecting the sun and creating warm shimmering little lights among masses of cold slate-gray pebbles on a wild north Pacific beach. A deep blood-red ruby, surrounded by tiny diamonds, set into the soft gold of my engagement ring, a daily reminder of deep and enduring love and commitment. A sparkling, multi-faceted diamond set in a plush black velvet case, its prismatic edges showering a rainbow of light slivers, for many the epitome of beauty and value. The legendary sword Excalibur, buried to it’s hilt in the stone, sunlight pouring down from above, as Arthur pulls it from the stone which has long held it, proving himself to be the true King.
My third daughter bears the names, Robyn Petra, and in so many ways she has proven herself to indeed be a bright shining stone. Like an agate shimmering among uncounted plain gray pebbles, Robyn is unique, and stands out among the crowd. Not content to go with the flow, she strives always to reach her full potential in everything she attempts. She refuses to just shrug, and accept things as they are, but instead tries to understand, and if possible, to brighten the world, by finding ways to make positive improvements. As agates come in many different hues, so Robyn has many different moods and many different aspects. One moment she may be golden softly bright, at another moment strong and warm-blooded red, and yet at another moment like a storm-black sky with sudden streaks of lightning thundering across it. But never is Robyn dull, cold gray. Robyn’s world is rarely a gentle pastoral scene, but rather it seems that her life is often set against a world that is wild and powerful, like that north Pacific beach, and yet she stands in it like a warm, sparkling little gem, even when its rough waves come pounding down over her.
Robyn Petra is also like my ruby engagement ring. The average engagement ring features a diamond at the center, bright and clear and sparkling, but Robyn is, like my ring, unique. The deep red of the ruby draws the eye deep into the stone, rather than just admiring the surface sparkles. And the red of the ruby is the red of blood, warm and coursing and full of life. Robyn is like that. She thinks deeply, never taking people or ideas at face value. She has a strong sense of justice, and expects the same from those around her. Her mind is alive and active, and she is full of life. And like my engagement ring, she is deeply committed to the things she believes in, and enduringly loyal and loving in true relationships, choosing quality over quantity. Sometimes, though, she can be hurt when others do not understand or accept her depth and passion, and then, like the ruby when it catches a bright ray of light, she can flash like a sword slashing suddenly out from its hilt.
Robyn Petra, my bright shining stone, is strong, like a diamond. And like a diamond, her strength can be turned to great purposes, as she creates things and influences people around her. But its cuts can also cause pain. Yet, as the facets of her life have been refined and perfected, more and more her strength has developed the beauty and value that are found in a perfectly cut diamond. Even in her natural appearance, Robyn is like a diamond. She stands strong and tall, and has beautiful form and great natural beauty. There are some who think that the beauty of a diamond is stark and cold, but Robyn is not like that. She is beautiful and warm and valuable, and more and more, she spreads around her a rainbow of encouragement, and thoughtfulness, and other fine character qualities.
Finally, Robyn is like the stone which held the sword Excalibur. She possesses and holds character qualities and talents and skills of great value. But she does not easily release them to just anyone, anytime. She is cautious and watchful, waiting for those events and people in which she sees the potential for working together, caring together, striving together, in truth and justice and strength, to create a world that is a better place.
This is my daughter, Robyn Petra, a bright shining stone.