I used to have a set of mala beads a few years ago. I lived in them, meditated with them, wore them to yoga, showered with them. Eventually through such excessive wear, the chain broke. I found them to be a grounding presence, rosewood beads linked together with red string, a quiet power.
So, finally, I've gotten a new set of beads, which, once again I am living in, unbeknownst to those around me. Somehow I feel more confident with them on - as a bracelet, as a necklace - I'm not quite sure why -- perhaps they bring me out of moments of nervousness and fear, to remind me that I am here, the chain continues, it moves, flexible with the flow of life.
The funny thing about the mala is that it doesn't fit comfortably anywhere -- it doesn't wrap around my ankle, nor does it wrap around my wrist without a slight dangling chain. But somehow it is perfect that way. Nothing is perfect and nothing should be taken for granted. Awareness always, the beads are moving. And while they are loose and I stay alert to their positionality, these beads don't fall off easily -- thus the cultivation of a quiet faith in life's intrinsically balanced trajectory.