There was this ring. The most precious ring I have ever owned. More than my wedding ring or engagement ring.. This ring that I once had. I wrote about a few times before..
I bought a bag full of costume jewelry for Jennifer at a garage sale. A little while later she showed me that it had a grown up ring in it. I slipped in on and it perfectly fit me. It had 5 bumps down the middle. I kissed it and her.. and told her it represented the 5 loves of my life. My 4 children (one of which was still growing in my tummy) and their Daddy.
I loved it immediately. And she loved me wearing it. But it was always hers.. she was allowing me to wear it. So every once in awhile she would take it back. The first time I thought it might be forever and I have to admit I was a little sad I loved the ring. But then within about 10 minutes she gave it back.
And that became a “thing” for us. She would ask for it back.. I would pout and say ok but she always gave it back to me.
For the days and nights she lay dying in my arms I wondered about it. . and a friend took it from me to try and get it dipped and strengthened. It had worn so thin.. I knew it would eventually break. Then we found out that couldn’t be done. .. I remember feeling defeated hearing that. That I would again just have to sit.. and wait.. and watch something else break out of my life.
It sounds so silly and dramatic .. but I loved the ring. I loved what it meant to me and Jennifer. How it was just so perfectly us. A gift for her from a garage sale.. and a gift for me.. but she was still in charge of it!
After she died I got a image of it tattooed on the same finger I wore it on.. to be ready for it to break one day. I have gone in for it 4 times and need at least one more to make it really stay… but I love it.
When it was time to bury her I was wearing the ring. I also had a mold of it we had made .. I planned on burying her with that plastic mold.
But when it came time .. I couldn’t do it. I just knew I should give her the real thing. For her to return to me again one day.. And I sobbed. The hardest I cried that day laying most of her ashes in the box that will hold them forever was placing that ring beside her urn. Not the plastic mold but the real one.
I kept almost doing it but pulling it back out before I laid it down. I remember looking up at Tony shaking my head no.. over and over again. Begging him silently to save me. To make none of this real. But he couldn’t. He started to say “If you want to know what I think you shouldn…”but I cut him off I didn’t want to hear him say it. Because I knew I had to give it to her.. to send it with her.
I knew that one day she would return it to me like always.. but this would be a much longer wait… the longest wait .. until she greets me again when its my time.
The tiny little box was sealed and almost immediately I regretted it. Scared of what I had done. But within a few days my hands adjusted to the nakedness.. although I still at times before bed go to take off that phantom ring. I knew I had made the right choice.. and eventually when I got to see her again she would give me that ring.
.. Its Jennifer’s ring and she gets to give it me.
A few days ago I got a email. I didn’t tell anybody.. And today a package came from Karen.. the writer of that email. I opened it with my 4 living loves and again, one little one in my belly..
…With a laugh and cry.. and a sprinkling of pride.. I again remember. Its Jennifers ring and SHE gets to give it me.
A woman whom I have never met, from across the country.. happened upon this ring and bought it and mailed it to me. Jonathan just stared at it. Stunned and silent.. his eyes so open and so deep. He seemed to be absorbing so much in those moments. I shared with them all the story of the ring and their sister. Nicholas asked to try it on. And Tony and I both just looked at each other.. tears rolling down both of our cheeks.
It’s so Jennifer. Her terms. Her way.. and one helluva secret. I can almost imagine how she was spinning happily around hair spread out all around her, head thrown back laughing and laughing.
i knew you would give it back to me
i never imagined like this
without you in my arms
thank you jennifer lynn
oh thank you