Five years ago today, we welcomed my son into the world. He was born contrary to the gentle home waterbirth we had planned, by emergency c-section, in what was probably the most frightening day of my life.
I’m not going to write about his birth story, except to say that it was traumatic, and dangerous. My son and I both made it through safely, but I’m not even sure if I am completely over the disappointment of not having the homebirth I envisioned. That’s another story though.
I haven’t had a wedding ring in five years. During the surgery, by body swelled up like a balloon because of the medicine pumping through my system, so the nurses had to cut my wedding ring off my finger. It was returned to us, but somehow in all the chaos of recovering from major abdominal surgery, dealing with hospital bills, navigating our way through a foreign health care system, and of course looking after baby, I lost my wedding ring.
At the time, my wedding ring was the least of our concerns. We were in a foreign country, with a sick and vulnerable newborn and a 3.5 year old that had quickly regressed back into toddler behaviour like peeing the bed and having tantrums - all normal stuff that comes with the addition of a new baby. My husband and I hardly gave any thought to the lost ring. He has a wedding ring, but has never worn it because of his work. He is an electrician working with high voltage electricity, and a wedding band on his finger is a work hazard. So, I just never thought it was a big deal to not have a ring on my finger.
Not that I didn’t cherish my wedding ring and it’s symbolism of our commitment to each other. I just knew that I didn’t need a ring to make me feel secure about that. So, for the last five years, I have gone without a wedding band.
About a month ago, my daughter came to me with a ring sizer. I asked what she was doing when she was slipping it on my finger, trying different sizes, and she said she just found it in a box. I kind of thought they were up to something, but when Mother’s Day came and went, and I didn’t get a ring, I thought no more of it.
Mornings in my home are usually a little hectic. Sometimes there is some shouting, and when my husband is around, I get annoyed with him messing up my morning routine. I was feisty with him when I left today because I was annoyed about something that is really not a big deal, but it was just one of those mornings. You know how it is sometimes.
After a whirlwind of dropping my kids off at the babysitter on time, finding my way through morning rush hour, almost throwing my cell phone out the window because it wouldn’t stop ringing, I arrived at my office, and couldn’t wait to get to my desk so I could have a break from running around like a crazy lady all morning.
I entered my cubicle to find a bouquet of flowers and a small package with a notecard on it saying “after five years, it’s about time…”
It’s not a traditional wedding band, but that's okay because we are far from traditional anyways. It’s an 8 karat gold ring with an opal stone that my mother-in-law gave me before she passed away. Apparently, Germany is the only place they use 8 karat gold for rings because the metal is harder. As with all things German, it is built to last. The ring has been sitting in my jewellery box for about 10 years, so long that I didn't even notice that it has been missing for the past few weeks. Opal is my birth stone, so it is perfect I think.
After 13 years together, my husband still continues to surprise and delight me when I least expect it. Even when he is driving me nuts and I think I can’t take any more, I still look at him and can’t help but think how lucky I am to have him.