Several months ago I shared my engagement story.
Engaging (or, How About It?)
Below are the rings my husband thought had sunk to the bottom of the river.
On top is the engagement ring. I flashed it everywhere in the nine months before we married.
I made certain everyone in flashing distance knew I was engaged by using my left hand almost exclusively.
I’m a rightie, by the way.
The ring on the bottom is the one my husband slipped (ok, let’s be honest. He jammed it) on my fourth finger, left hand, during our wedding ceremony.
I wore them through pregnancy and child-rearing, baths and showers, cooking and baking and dish washing and puppy house-breaking.
Maybe that was the problem.
About 22 years into marriage, which would make it almost 10 years back, I was fusting with my rings in church. Fusting is the act of twisting the rings on my finger, pushing them up a bit, down a bit and then back around.
Something felt different.
I looked at the engagement ring where the biggest diamond was supposed to be and saw only prongs. Can I confess that I probably didn’t pay as much attention to the rest of the service as I should have?
After the final benediction I alerted my family, who all dropped to their knees to examine the carpet. A beautiful thing happened then. Everyone is church started looking for my diamond.
But no one found it.
I put the engagement ring in my jewelry box and just wore my wedding band. That’s the one on the bottom with the three smaller diamonds. And guess what happened? Yep. Those diamonds jumped ship and the naked wedding band cowered in my jewelry box with the naked engagement ring.
My husband graciously did not remind me that I should have had both cleaned and checked periodically.
For a month or so my left hand remained unadorned and I had to fend off a ridiculous number of men who thought I was unattached and available.
But I didn’t like the no-ring/not married look at all.
My mother, not long before my dad died, had bought new wedding rings to wear since the ones Daddy gave her were worn thin to the point of fragility. She’d willed those rings to my eldest son, so he could use the diamond when he was ready to get married. He wasn’t ready to get married when the Great Diamond Fiasco occurred and told me I could wear the rings.
When he was ready to get married, my son could afford to buy a diamond for his wife.
So I continued to wear my mom’s rings.
I loved my mom. She was a great mom, loving and selfless and funny. Every time I looked at my fourth finger, left hand, I thought of her.
See the problem? When you look at your wedding rings, you should be thinking, “I love my husband,” not “I love my mom.”
But there were always other things to spend money on and Mom’s rings continued on my hand while mine sat in my jewelry box.
On our yearly Chicago Christmas junket last month, my husband pulled a small plastic bag out of his pocket.
Inside were my rings.
The ones he had given me almost 32 years ago. He’d snuck them out of my jewelry box, brought them to a jeweler, and had new stones set.
So now my mom’s rings can go to my son to do with as he wishes.
And I can look at my fourth finger, left hand, and be reminded that That’s right! I do love my husband!