Crystalyn and I connected via the internet world a few years ago and hit it off fast. She is such a huge champion of women and incredibly generous with her time and encouragement! She is a Lousiana single mom to Winston (5), and she creates the most beautiful jewelry with her company, Crystalyn Aucoin Jewelry that women are all dying to have. They are those exact pieces of everyday meets fine jewelry that you can wear all day, day to night. It’s for that busy on the go mom that wants those special pieces without feeling too dressy. I LOVE her stuff and have my eye on multiple pieces as a treat for meeting a few upcoming goals!
Let’s back up a bit. I asked Crystalyn to participate in the Moments in Motherhood series because she has an incredibly powerful story about loss and rediscovering what she wants out of life and following that passion. She is a mom with ups and down like us and she’s turned that devastation into a beautiful, successful life for her and her son.
Crystalyn met her husband Ryan when working in his family’s fine jewelry store. They fell in love and started designing pieces together, often times working with couples in designing the perfect engagement ring for their big moment! They got married and continued growing and building their life together, then were about to become parents!
During this time Ryan wasn’t feeling well and was going through multiple tests and doctors trying to determine the reason behind his sickness. On the same day they found out they were having a healthy baby boy, they also got a call that Ryan’s sickness was most likely cancer. Can you imagine the emotional rollercoaster that day was?
Crystalyn and Ryan welcomed Winston together, but unfortunately after many treatments and medical intervention, Ryan passed when Winston was 16 months old. The strength shown by Crystalyn in that time is mindblowing to me. Here she is a brand new mom, recovering from birth, caring for her husband during very invasive and extensive treatments. The emotional and physical load becoming a parent already has is astounding, but top it with this other aspect of a sick partner and I can’t imagine not feeling like everything was out of my control and crashing down around me.
How Crystalyn is Keeping Ryan’s Memory Alive
One of the questions I asked Crystalyn in our interview was how she is essentially introducing Ryan to her son, Winston. How is she able to explain how amazing his dad was to him? Knowing how impossible it is to paint the whole picture, what are some ways that they keep his memory alive in their family?
One of the ways she shared is that they just talk about him. He is a huge part of their life and something to be shared. Comments about favorite songs or traits her son shares with her husband are ways that she can keep bringing the conversation back to Winston knowing his dad.
The two also pray to Ryan each night, being comforted by him guiding them and watching over them and their life actions and decisions. This is something that is also comforting to me in doing with loved ones that have passed. I like knowing they are listening and waiting to hear from me/guide me.
Two other ways that Crystalyn plans to keep Ryan in Winston’s life is with two very unique and special mementos done at his funeral. The first is a book of Bob Dylan lyrics that all the guests signed with memories, wishes, blessings, etc. to the family about Ryan. Something that was meaningful to him filled with the love of their closest family and friends they can look at as often as they need.
The second is something incredibly special for Winston as he grows. At Ryan’s funeral, she has self addressed envelopes to Winston for loved ones to take home and write a letter to him about his dad. Favorite stories, memories, traits they admired, etc. showcasing what a special man he was are waiting for his son to be read when he’s ready. It gives me chills to even hear about it or write it because I think about that moment and am so excited for him to be opened up to a whole new experience shared with his dad.
During the month of Ryan’s birthday, Crystalyn and her family also raise money to help take the financial burden off families experiencing cancer by releasing butterflies together in honor of Ryan. This event is able to raise money to impact families, something Ryan was passionate about, and so far they’ve been able to gift over $20,000!
How Crystalyn Takes Care of Herself
Something major that kept coming back to me as I was talking with Crystalyn was how the hell was she taking care of herself. I can only imagine the giving she had to do when Ryan passed, especially having a crazy 16 month old. When and how does she let herself grieve or have some self care?
She talked a bit about how when Ryan passed she was unable to do anything creative for awhile. Designing and writing weren’t feeling natural, so she turned to video journaling. She came up with some intentional and thoughtful questions, then thought through and answered those questions for herself in a video journal. She started with the question, “what’s important to me right now?” and has continued this practice to narrow down her focus and purpose and the direction she wants her life to go for her and her son.
Her advice to women, especially women walking through something traumatic like loss? Go one step at a time, unapologetically, and towards what matters and lights you up. Asking is this the life I want? And figuring out what is and going for it.
Like I said above, Crystalyn’s jewelry is the type you see and immediately want. She wanted to fill the void of giving women everyday fine jewelry that was real (sterling silver or 14k gold) but meant for every day use.
The thing I love best about her company? She encourages women to buy their OWN piece of jewelry for THEMSELVES, breaking the stigma of men always buying women jewelry. Set a goal, save the money, crush the goal and treat yourself to that special gift. Obsessed.
Her collections are all centered around these key lessons in life Crystalyn values. Being open, living with gratitude, living on the edge, etc. The pieces in each collection serve as reminders for the ways she, and her customers, want to live, and setting the intention for the day when you put your jewelry on in the morning.
One last way that Crystalyn has to serve her community is with a new course she has coming out! It’s all about finding yourself and discovering who you are. The goal is to inspire women and build a community to help them live the life they deserve, and I can’t think of a better leader for that job than Crystalyn Aucoin!
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