“One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them.”
–J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings
I recently lost my wedding ring. I had it one night at a networking event in Dallas. The next morning I worked out and left my ring (I thought) on the nightstand, since I don’t wear my ring to the gym.
Then, a day or so later, when we were going somewhere, it was nowhere to be seen.
I searched high and low for it, emptying drawers, looking under the bed, checking the crack between the carpet and the baseboards. You name it, I checked.
It went to the land of lost socks. It’s frolicking with all of those single socks that disappeared from your dryer.
Either that, or it’s in the bottom of the river waiting for Gollum to find it.
In either case, it’s not on my finger, where it should be.
When I first bought the ring and what would become my wife’s wedding ring, I sort of hovered around the typical rules of thumb for how much to spend on wedding rings.
I say sort of. I didn’t have a job. I was a full time student. Therefore, I had no income, so it wasn’t really possible to buy a ring based on earnings. But, I was about to be an intern at an Atlanta law firm, so I spent about 1/12 of what I was going to earn that summer.
While I liked my ring just fine, it wasn’t particularly spectacular or meaningful.
It was symbolic.
I did feel weird going without a ring when I went out in public, but otherwise, not having one didn’t change anything fundamental about me.
So, when I bought a replacement ring, I got one that was significantly less than what I paid for my original ring.
It looks good. It’s not fancy or ornate, but I don’t need fancy or ornate.
I need something that conveys one message, and this ring succeeds in conveying that message just as well as any other ring would.
I spent several hundred dollars (actually, I know exactly how much I spent on my original ring) on my first wedding ring, money that I, at the time, didn’t have. Even then, I got a relatively pared down version of a wedding ring. I’m not a jewelry guy. I don’t even wear my West Point class ring, which is a relative rarity; Army people know what the term “ring knocker” means – West Point grads and their enormous class rings that they knock on tables.
But, looking back, I spent too much. There are many things that define what your marriage is and how successful it will be.
Your love for your spouse is not defined by how much you spent on one piece of symbolic jewelry.
This time, I got something much more understated. I spent enough; I spent what I needed to do to get the job done. Spending ten times as much would not make me any better of a husband or demonstrate my love ten times as much.
If you’re defining your love through a ring, you have your priorities wrong.
If you like this ring and want something similar, I ordered mine through Shelli Hoggarth Designs.
Have you tried to keep up with the Joneses and overspent for something that was simply symbolic? Let’s talk about it in the comments below!