Tying the Knot in a Meaningful and Memorable Way (Without Losing Our Savings or Sanity)

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Guest Post: Putting Away the Engagement Ring

By Mindy Wood

The choice to have an engagement ring was not much of a choice at all; it was just what was expected. My sister had an engagement ring, my friends had engagement rings, and not having one didn’t seem like an option. I happily wore my ring until the thrill of just getting engaged wore off.

I started to notice that whenever someone would ask to see it, I felt embarrassed. Instead of feeling empowered by the rock on my hand, I was feeling vulnerable. Instead of feeling loved I was feeling spoiled. I started to realize that the ring didn’t symbolize how much Matt loved me; instead it represented values that I disagreed with. That ring started to look more like stuff than love, but making the decision to take it off was a lot harder than I thought it would be. I didn't exactly need it or want it but Matt had given it to me, and that meant a lot. So I kept it on for no other reason than that I didn’t know what else to do.

When I finally put my engagement ring away it was like all the doubt and vulnerability I had been feeling was captured in that little black box too. All of the anxiety and stress of wedding planning, all of the “but you have to have this” and “it’s not a wedding without that” could be boxed away with the engagement ring and, in essence, the engagement. I had a wonderful time being engaged. It was a great time to transition toward married life and discover new things about each other but I’m glad that it’s over and that I can be a wife now. I had a wonderful engagement ring but I’m glad to have my simple wedding ring that really represents me, my values, and my commitment to my husband.

Mindy is a writer over at purposefullysimple.wordpress.com. When she's not writing, she's playing outside with her husband, cooking yummy food, or discovering something new to learn about.

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Anonymous said...

My fiance and I are wearing our wedding rings now. I proposed and had wedding bands custom made for us by a jewler on Etsy that uses recycled metals. I'm looking forward to the day when people don't expect to see "the rock." Perhaps if more people become interested in bucking tradition in favor of their own ethos and aesthetics (or finances!), people will come around to realizing that an engagement is not about a diamond ring. Thanks for sharing your story! :)

Molly said...

Long before we became engaged, I mentioned that as far as a ring went, I did not want something new. When my husband proposed, he opened the box/asked for my hand in marriage, and then asked if the ring looked familiar. It was my mother's engagement ring from her & my father's relationship! They divorced and are now remarried (to other people), and the ring was just sitting in a box, along with its interconnecting wedding band (the two get fused together to make the complete marriage band). I love it for the sentimental value but also because we went about the ring issue in a way that worked for us.

Unknown said...

Such an interesting topic! Since getting engaged almost a year ago, I've noticed rings a lot more and was surprised by how many women don't wear engagement rings. I don't think it's that far out of the norm.

I love my ring--yes, it's big and blings. But I love it because I love the story of it, which was it was my fiance's great-grandma's from 1918. I'm a storyteller at heart and any time I get to tell that story, I feel such happiness.

So no guilt on my part!

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