It seems that one of the top Olympic beach volleyballers lost her wedding band in the sand during one of her matches over the weekend. (Yes it is true, that in a house full of "Y" chromosomes, the women's beach volleyball is the number 1 Olympic viewing experience! I know that it has nothing at all to do with the "thrill of victory or the agony of defeat"!!) As chronicled here, the story is much more about Kerri Walsh keeping her composure during the match and not fretting about the lost ring. She basically traded carats for CARATS!! All is well in Beijing (and in the Walsh's marriage) as the ring was located in the sand after the match, but it got me to thinking about that little band of gold. (or silver or platinum or whatever your fancy!) I know that this sounds extraordinarily unromantic and a bit callous, but I rarely wear my wedding band. Please do not take this as a dismissal of my marriage or of the husband. We are as committed to each other as ever before, (either that, or we should be committed after all of these years!) but the ring, which is a symbol of that commitment, resides on the fireplace mantle as often as it resides on my finger. Why? Well, it doesn't fit as well as it used to. It is a bit big and it seems to get bigger when my hands are cold, which is often. It has a knack of slipping off my finger into my gloves in the winter, and one miserable January morning found me on all fours, scouring the garage floor for the trinket which flew off as I was carrying in groceries. In the summer heat, the opposite happens! My fingers swell and the ring has a tendency to cut off my circulation. (The husband likes to joke about the fact that his ring, which refuses to budge, has permanently put him out of circulation!!) As a result, removing the ring is the first thing that I do when I come home! I can't play guitar with it. It moves and interferes with the strings and the chording. I can't bake or cook with it on, otherwise I would find myself in an "I Love Lucy" episode with my fingers stuck in the drain. Working out? Forget it! The sweat would remove it within minutes, which is why I am so stunned at Kerri Walsh's determination to wear hers during competition!
When we first got married, that ring was representative of all of the hearts and flowers associated with love, commitment and the like. And while it is still important (I would never change it or redesign it) I think that there are other things in our life that are just as representative. How about the two kids? How about the 23 years? How about the memories, good and bad? How about the jokes and the tears and the fights and the friends and the friendships? The ring? I would miss it, for certain, but I am not sure that I would beach-comb for it. The ring can be replaced. The other stuff--not so much!!