LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — The holidays, in particular, can be a challenging time for those who are mourning the loss of a loved one.
And while everyone grieves in different ways, a Connecticut woman remains hopeful that her business venture, which celebrates the life of her late husband, will bring comfort to those who empathize with her story.
Debra Feldman's world was flipped upside down in 2004 when her husband, Sam, was unexpectedly diagnosed with Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (PSP) -- a rare, degenerative brain disease that is similar in some ways to Parkinson's Disease and Amyotrophic Lateral Scleorsis (ALS).
Over time, Feldman and her two sons, Josh and Jon, experienced a roller coaster of emotions as they watched Sam progress through each stage of the deadly disease.
While it was sometimes difficult to ignore the time bomb ticking in the back of their minds, Feldman and her sons focused on creating precious moments filled with Sam's infectious laughter as his life drew near to an end.
In 2007, the prominent Connecticut attorney lost his battle to PSP at the young age of 52.
"At the end of my husband's life, while he was in hospice, I realized that life became simple," Feldman explained. "It wasn't about our possessions, but rather, our connections. I love and miss [Sam] dearly, and can not quantify my love for him."
Looking past the heartache, Feldman searched for a creative way to commemorate her late husband's life.
"A friend suggested that I write a book telling about our journey," Feldman explained. "[But] I felt that I could share my positive outlook on life through jewelry. I wanted to find a way to connect people in a positive way."
So, that's exactly what she did.
Feldman spent two years developing one-of-a-kind, sterling silver designs for Linked Jewelry to promote her idea that everyone is connected for a reason.
"I created this line of jewelry to give words to the person who has trouble expressing themselves," she added. "Each piece of jewelry is linked to a personal sentiment. I want the jewelry to connect people with heartfelt emotions."
The keepsake collection includes pendants and bracelets, which are captured by sentimental sayings that everyone can relate to in different ways: "Can't Measure Love," "Let the Light Shine Through," "Find Your Direction," "Two Hearts That Beat As One," "Key To Life Is Balance," and many more.
Each design is tied to a personal story, which in turn, links Feldman to customers who can relate to her cherished memories.
"There is something intangible that happens, and I find that it is more than a sale of jewelry, but rather a meaningful connection," Feldman explained. "Customers start sharing their story with other customers, and everyone seems to find a common bond. It is heartwarming to hear and repeat stories that touch my heart, as we all others."
"Ten percent of all proceeds from the online sale of every Linked piece can be earmarked for the fight against PSP or the battle to end Multiple Scleorsis (MS), which my dad battled with most of his adult life," she added. "Gone, but never forgotten, I created this unique line of designer jewelry to link us to all those precious connections, and to support these worthy causes."
For more information about Linked Jewelry, click here.
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