The One?

There is so much talk about finding “the one”. How do you know if he/she is the one? When you’ve thought you found the one before and it tanked, it can leave a person scratching their head. The whole “You’ll just know” theory is forever tainted.

Something I’ve learned and am still learning…always learning is that “The One” is the one you’re willing to fight with and for which means work through anything and everything. But, it must go both ways. If you were willing to do this for someone and they weren’t or vice versa, you weren’t the ones for each other either. No doubt, you’ll learn a lot from this experience and hearts will break, but making it to the end with each other will take mutual desire and commitment. This is what real love deserves.

The one you can be honest with. The one who loves you in your bad moods as much as your highs. The one you’re willing to trust again after your disappointments and betrayals. The one who is willing to deal with your stuff. And…will you deal with theirs? No one is perfect, including ourselves, so to find a person who you not only want to do life with, but are willing to, is the one. Because, life is hard. Cherish that person.

Love after divorce is different. Eyes are more open, deep hurts have left crevices, sometimes children, exes, and location limitations are involved. There has to be more than infatuation because you know the difficulties of marriage now. What do you need? What can you give?

In order to enjoy the vacations, we need to love well in between. The hard stuff. The mundane stuff. The painful stuff. The unknown stuff. If you’re both willing, congratulations are in order. Because, that’s the hard stuff to find!

The one you want to go through everything with is the one for you.

We don’t love perfectly. We have issues, baggage, fears, scars. But, when you find someone who decides to love you through them and you decide to do the same, enjoy your one. And love and appreciate them like crazy. I realize this more and more as my stuff continues to rise to the surface. To be loved anyway is a miracle in itself.

“All of Me” by John Legend is really just that. For someone to want and take all of you includes so much more than your body. It’s your past, present, future, collateral damage, and most importantly your heart.

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The Lost Ring

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After my divorce, I faced the age old question of what to do with my wedding ring. The ring I’d worn proudly on my left hand for 10 years was now a painful memory of vows unkept and a dream to let go of. It took awhile to take my ring off, but once I did, it haunted me. I knew in my spirit that I did all I could to keep our marriage alive and so in some ways I felt like I still deserved that ring. I loved that ring. I was proud of that ring and what it meant.

Did I have momentary thoughts of flushing it or throwing it out the car window? Yes. But, I just couldn’t do it. It meant too much to me personally. I gave that ring, my marriage, my all. I also didn’t like the idea of it sitting in my jewelry box for the rest of my days and glaring at me like a failure or betrayal every time I saw it. So, I came up with the bright idea to transform it into a mother’s ring.

There was no other way I could afford a platinum mother’s ring with real jewels any other way. Afterall, one of my daughter’s birth stones is diamond. That alone makes the piece way beyond my typical budget. A couple months after my divorce was final, I took it to a jeweler in town and did some refurbishing. I replaced the main diamond with a peridot (my birthstone) and one of the baguettes with an emerald for my youngest daughter. We left the other diamond baguette alone for my oldest daughter, resized it to fit my right hand, and an authentic and priceless mother’s ring was born. I wear it everyday and love it for so much more than how it looks. It’s personal and brings me peace. It reminds me that my 10 years married weren’t wasted. My daughters came from it and that would never change. I turned that sad memento into a beautiful gift for myself.

Yesterday, I was getting ready to leave the house and I couldn’t find my ring in my jewelry box. Frustratingly, I called out to the girls “Did either of you take my RING?” My youngest came in and told me she did to play dress-up. My heart sank. Of all the rings, earrings, necklaces, or bracelets she could have taken, she took the one I could never afford to replace and meant so much. I’ve told her so many times before to stay out of my jewelry for exactly this reason. And, here we are. Frantically, we all began to search.

My daughter is four, so her story changed multiple times as to what she did with it and where she left it. She said she took it off in the bathroom because it was too big and hasn’t seen it since. My oldest daughter and I searched both bathrooms and bedrooms high and low on our hands and knees for an hour. Me, crying uncontrollably which brought them both tears. They were so sorry, we all prayed, but I couldn’t compose myself. The ring was monumental to me. I was proud of the strength it took to transform it and continue to wear it. To me, it was a symbol of this strength through the whole ordeal and now it was gone.

I called my mom in tears and sobs. She promised to come over first thing in the morning and help us search. She said “Unless she flushed it or swallowed it, it has to be in the house! Don’t worry we’ll find it.” Still, I went to bed with little hope. Woke up to puffy swollen eyes, made breakfast for the girls, and waited. Mom came over as promised and sent me out for a coffee break while she searched with the girls. I needed that break more than ever.

I came home to heads shaking. They couldn’t find it either. So, I made peace with the fact that the ring may or may not ever turn up. I would let the search go and move on. I would know that my strength is not tied up in a band around my finger, that my story hadn’t changed, just the jewelry on my hand, and that the reason the ring was so special was because of the two girls staring back at me. And that we would be okay.

I started my shower for the day and as I was preparing to get in, what do I see on my bathroom floor, plain as day, the RING!!! I couldn’t believe my eyes, there it was between my sinks.  A place I know I’d looked before. A miraculous reminder that my strength was there all along and would show up when I least expected it to.

While my daughter was helping me search last night, she reminded me that “with God all things are possible”. And she just reminded me again. What a relief and a blessing to see my ring again. I will continue to wear it every day and even more proudly than before.