Tony lost his wedding ring in February 2008. He noticed it was not on his finger as he was letting Barkley out one day, and by that time he had already been to the store and shoveled the driveway. He retraced his steps, went back to the supermarket and searched the freezers (ice cream, of course). He tore his car apart. He borrowed a metal detector and searched the yard. Nothing. To say he was upset would be an understatement.
It was insured, luckily. The appraisal amount was based on the original cost. If he wanted to get the same ring, it would have been TWICE as much due to the increased cost of gold. So he just never got around to submitting the claim and getting a 'real' ring. Instead he got a $20 replacement band at a mall kiosk. Sleeping, showering, playing sports, etc... He never takes that thing off. It looks like any old ring. A plain silver band. But if you hold it in your hand there is very little weight, as if hollow.
It's just a ring, both the original and the replacement. In the big picture it's no big deal. But our bands are special. The ones we picked out together in the grown-up jewelry store, and put on each others' fingers the day we were married... those were our rings.
Every once in a while I'd ask Tony if he wanted to go pick out another one, and he always declined. I don't know if he was holding out hope that one day he'd find the original, or if it just bummed him out too much to really replace it.
This weekend we were both doing yard work. It wasn't on my To Do list, but it was beautiful out. Des went down for a nap and I wanted to be out in the air picking weeds. I started out at one end of the house and worked my way down.
This was a particularly long nap for Des. Again, I didn't have a plan for how much I wanted to get done so I just kept on going, filling 2 garbage cans along the way. When I got to the grass down by the end of the driveway, I noticed something metallic looking among the weeds and rocks.
A quarter maybe? It was dirty, faded silver.
I leaned in further... It was a ring.
Just sitting there on top of the soil. I picked it up thinking maybe Tony dropped his knock-off cheapo as he was down there earlier. No, this was much heavier. Solid and strong.
I RAN to the backyard where Tony was dumping one of my garbage cans. I threw my arms around him and said, "Give me your hand."
"I don't want to," he replied.
I was covered in filth and sweat and hugging him unexpectedly. I don't blame him for that reaction.
"Yes, you do." I put the ring in his hand.
"What is this?"
"It's YOUR RING."
"No it's not... no it's not."
He could not believe it. It took him a few minutes to be convinced. We hugged for a long time and cried. It wasn't just the rings. It's the way it happened.
3+ years of New England weather. Snow, rain, a near tornado just a few weeks earlier... Cars, lawn mowers, snow blowers. It shows on the ring. A few little dings and a tarnished finish. He doesn't think he'll get it polished. Those marks are like badges of honor.
Fake on top, real on the bottom.
He regularly wears both now. I joke that people are going to think he has sister wives. But I really think it's cute. He just loves his one wife supah extra!
Welcome back, old friend.