When I was young, all I wanted was a bright, shiny ring.
I prayed for the day when a ring would come.
In the midst of chaos and stress, a ring came for me.
Not the way that I wanted one to come, but I thought that was ok.
I had a bright, sparkly ring.
I never took the ring off.
I got it polished and cleaned almost weekly.
So much so that I was warned the ring might become too thin.
But I loved that ring.
The ring survived deep trials and tribulations.
The ring survived the birth of two amazing children.
When I took the ring off, I felt bare and that something was missing.
The second I could put the ring on again, I would.
I absently twisted the missing space on my finger.
But years went by.
I polished and cleaned the ring less.
Every once in awhile I would remember to clean it myself, but it never went back to the jeweler.
Didn't make time to get it cleaned.
And then there were times I took the ring off and I would forget to put it back on.
I didn't immediately seek it out when I got home again.
I didn't realize something was missing.
The bright and sparkly ring no longer seemed so bright and sparkly.
And then there was a day when the ring came off.
I thought it would go back on again.
But that day never came.
Suddenly it had found a permanent place in a little box on the shelf.
I had no idea that the day I took it off that it would never go back on again.
So here am I, without a ring.
I have learned some lessons along the way.
I have learned that you need to keep polishing and shining that ring.
Not all rings are the same.
And one ring does not fit all.
So take your time.
Wait for the right ring.
Dirt will get in the prongs.
The band will get scratches.
But don't neglect the ring.
Not all the dirt or scratches will come out.
But despite the flaws, the ring can still shine and sparkle.