Lost and Found
Dad and Mom found each other, well into their careers. Mom was the Head Nurse on the OB/Gyn floor at the local hospital, and Dad was the new MD on staff. They met and fell in love. When the topic of engagement came up, Mom offered Dad a tattered newspaper picture of a wedding ring set she had clipped as a little girl, and asked if he could “find something like this?” A big task, pre-internet, to be sure. Undaunted, he went looking, and learned that there were still two ring sets in Minneapolis. He bought one. He proposed, she accepted, and the rest is history.
Fast forward until a few months ago. Mom misplaced her ring. At first we shrugged it off, and figured it was in their bedroom. Nope. Well, it has to be in the apartment somewhere. How about the bathroom? Nope. Kitchen? No. Weeks passed. Ok, we could expand the search a little… how about the car? No. My car? No. My kitchen? No. No, NO?! NO!! Where could it have gone? We entertained all possible scenarios and not one led us to her wedding ring. Eventually Mom gave up, and called the insurance company to make a claim. Three weeks ago the check came, and she deposited it in the bank.
Mom tried to lighten up the situation by saying that it didn’t really matter. She didn’t need a ring to know that she was married. After all, she still had the solid gold band that she was married with. She could wear that. Or, even better, Dad had given her a thin gold band with diamonds for an anniversary, years prior. She would start wearing that ring, and she did.
Mom put the loss behind her, but Dad couldn’t. Once the insurance check came, Dad asked if I could help him pick out a new wedding ring. “Of course, I won’t be able to find the same one” he said, but he was hopeful that he could find something she would like, and wear. I suggested that he talk with Mom first, before buying a replacement for something that was so irreplaceable. Dad agreed, but I could tell that finding Mom a new ring was something that he wanted, even if she (possibly) didn’t.
Fast forward again to yesterday. My little family had just come home from seeing the new Star Wars movie (excellent!), and I set out to get some groceries for the week. I parked the car, walked into the store, and nabbed a cart. I hadn’t gotten far before my phone buzzed with the following text, “Hey, is this Bubbe’s ring”? What? WHAT?! Next came an accompanying picture of The Ring in The Girlie’s hand. Unbelievable. I called the house to ask WHERE had she found it? Turns out she was looking through the library book bag for her lost library card (which was in my purse), and at the bottom of the bag found Mom’s ring. The Girlie called Mom to let her know of the good news, and Mom told Dad. There were happy cheers (and a few tears) all around.
How does someone deal with the loss of a treasured item? Maybe you choose to find a replacement, accepting that it can never really be the same. Maybe you pretend to give up the search, but never really do. Or, maybe you rethink the value of the item, and decide that the (not lost) feelings invoked by possessing it are more important than the item itself. In the end, I think that ring set was meant for Mom from the start, and it missed being on her hand as much as we missed seeing it there. I also think The Universe may have listened to Dad’s sadness and didn’t want him to buy a new ring. What the ring was EVER doing in our library book bag, we will never know, but it came back, and we are all so very relieved that it did.
Message of the Day: If you exhaustively search for a lost treasure, and can’t find it, stop looking. Maybe you’ll never find the actual item, and maybe you’ll find something else. But, maybe… just maybe…The Universe will step in, and what you hope to find will appear right in front of you.