How silly it is to be defined by such a simple object … but there was a moment in time when the ring on my left hand was the most significant part of my identity.
Someone wanted to be betrothed to me. Forever.
It came in a beautiful rose-shaped ring box and was presented to me on a platter filled with love, promises, and visions of a beautiful future.
The ring became my best friend and companion, always with me. I refused to take it off at nights. I refused to take it off when I washed my hands. We were connected.
Walking out of the house, I created a habit of checking my ring finger.
During the 10 years that I wore that ring, I can probably count how many times I accidentally didn’t have it on me. It was so rare.
Not wearing the ring left me feeling naked, vulnerable and somehow in the wrong. It was a part of me, I was always conscious of its presence because, in so many ways, it defined me.
… Once, he said something along the lines …
“No diamond is big enough to hold you down, Gelie.”
Years went by … and there was a moment in time when wearing the ring felt heavy. I was very conscious of it but in a different way. It defined me, but now in a different way.
Trapped. Trapped in the life I created.
Soon, came the moment in time when I would purposefully leave the house without my ring. I wanted to experience what it would be like to not have to feel the heaviness. I wanted a taste of freedom.
It felt liberating … but temporary and sad.
I began to develop animosity towards the ring, which now felt more like “diamond handcuffs.”
Then came a moment in time when I stopped wearing it completely.
It wasn’t temporary anymore, and it felt … good.
A layer shed.
For a period of time, after the ring permanently came off, I would still feel my ring finger every time I’d leave the house. Old habit.
… And when I would feel my naked finger sans the ring, I’d smile.
Smile, because I was proud of myself.
Proud of making a tough decision.
Proud because I didn’t let the diamond hold me down.
I did it.
I would look at my bare hands and see freedom.
Nothing there to weigh me down.
No longer defined by a ring. No more handcuffs.
But what should I do with the ring? An old friend who was now an enemy.
I didn’t know what to do with the ring …
Should I sell it?
Should I save it for our daughter?
I said goodbye to the ring and gave it to my mom for safekeeping. It was like saying goodbye to a piece of me that I needed to let go. Not easy, but so necessary. . .
Time went by, and I decided to sell it on consignment.
If it sells, then it was meant to go. If it doesn’t, maybe it’s meant to stay with me.
Eight months go by, the ring doesn’t sell. Is it a sign? I don’t know … I’m still too angry, hurt and jaded. I pick it up from the jewelry store and hand it off to another jewelry store.
Three more months go by … I wake up one day and my heart is full of love.
When he gave me that ring, it was full of love, promise and bright light.
It was the purest gift he could give me at the time. The ring has been through so much with me. It’s mine and it wants to come back home.
I decide to pick it up, resize it and wear it proudly on my right hand (if and when I want to).
The 10 years I spent wearing that ring were meaningful. The life we shared was meaningful. Even the pain had meaning …
When I show it to Aris and tell her the story, I want her to feel proud that she was the product of pure love.
I miss my companion and I can’t wait for my ring to come back home.