Monday, June 8, 2009

Hope within Despair

I have taken to wearing an engagement type ring again. It was given to me as a Valentine's Day gift from my second husband. I had coveted it for over a year at a local jewelery store. My husband had insisted on giving me a custom designed engagement ring with a very large diamond, when we married, not my real, more simplistic style at all. But I went along with the first ring to please my husband. But as time went on I was just too worried about damaging or having it stolen that I didn't like wearing it on an everyday basis. Hence, the second ring.

It had a round diamond (instead of the oval shape of my first ring) with two emeralds on each side. I really just fell in love with the overall simplistic look and that it was unique with the emeralds (and green is my favorite color). But the ring cost almost as much as my first and therefore, not affordable. After seeing it and coveting it for over a year, I asked if we could have the diamond taken out and replaced with a cubic zirconia. This suddenly made the ring affordable and I loved that it would be my little secret - having a ring that looked so genuine but wasn't. The emeralds were of fantastic quality and color and that made the ring expensive even without the real diamond.

When I received the ring as a gift I loved it and wore it daily. I no longer felt so worried about damaging, losing or having my original engagement ring stolen. It gave me a lot of joy because it was exactly what I wanted. During my divorce I was forced to sell the big diamond as part of the divorce settlement and then my husband asked for all my jewelry back (what he had given to me as gifts). Somehow my emeral, cz ring had been forgotten by him and was never mentioned. So in a way it became another little secret of mine. Although I did want to have some kind of token from my marriage as a memory of the love we had once shared!

A few months ago I thought it silly not to wear - it gave me so much pleasure why not wear it? People can do whatever they want these days and many older widows continue to wear their rings (it didn't matter to me that this was a ring from my remarriage). Every time I put the ring on and wore it made me a little happy. It also served as hope for me that someday I will remarry but in the meantime I can wear and enjoy a lovely ring without being married. I got tons of compliments on it while at work which was fun too.

But then disaster struck! Yesterday at work my hand struck up against something and as I was cashiering I looked at my ring and saw one of the emeralds missing. I was heartbroken. Not that an emerald was gone (each was supposed to be worth $1,000) but that something so pretty and enjoyable to me was ruined. I just couldn't stand the thought of having something else valuable to me taken away - something that had provided such pleasure to me in these trying times. As I looked around on the floor, I became aware of how futile it would be to find the emerald. I tried to take stock and feel brave but I continued to look - what harm would come out of it? I couldn't just give up so easily. I tried to retrace my steps and to think of how I could have bumped the ring. It made sense that it would have happened while bagging a purchase so I decided to look in the bin that holds the plastic shopping bags and there was a glimmer of green resting on top of the pile of white bags! I felt vindicated! Disaster averted! A tiny bit of hope!

Today I received my weekly email message from life coach Cheryl Richardson, which was by coincidence on the topic of feeling hope even while in dire situations. I thought about my ring and everything it represents. That it was a symbol of a marriage that ended tragically; about how much I loved it and still wanted to wear it despite the pain of my divorce. And then how one of the emeralds had fallen out and all that could have symbolized - the absolute end of my marriage. That would have been the more fitting ending - to have not found the emerald. But that is not what happened. I did find it! So therein lies a little hope within a dire situation.

Today I am grateful:

1. To have found the emerald.
2. To have gotten my Cheryl Richardson weekly message about hope.
3. To feel hope even within the pain and sadness I am now experiencing.
4. That happy endings can exist even within sad endings.
5. For all the pleasure this little ring has given me (and it is a plus to whomever might marry me in the future because my frugal nature will enable me to wear it as my next wedding ring!).
6. For having the strength to wear the ring because it gave me such joy - and right now small pleasures mean a lot.

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