I didn't realize that a marriage should last longer than the engagement ring. Or maybe most don't, I'm not sure. Well, I'm not sure if my ring underperformed or my marriage is over performing.
My engagement ring broke. Now, it's not the most fabulous, biggest ring you've ever seen. It's had more than it's fair share of troubles - the prongs first bent when we were still engaged, not six months into our engagement. The diamond fell out once - I've never before or since felt so compelled to dig through the trash, but you'd better believe I did that day. It's been repaired countless times. You'd think the way I talk about it that it's huge, but when I tell you that I was in college and my husband was enlisted in the Navy when we were engaged, that should tell you something about it's size.
I live in a place where most women "upgrade" their rings each year, with each raise, with each anniversary. But I was raised by a woman who still wears the same ring her husband of FORTY YEARS (!) gave her when they were fresh college graduates. She could have upgraded, but she chose not to.
I love the promise of my engagement ring. My husband promised to stick with me no matter what when he gave me that ring. We were wrinkle-free, didn't have to cover any grays and didn't have any extra chins. Neither of us had owned a house, had children or were completely on our own. We made that promise lightyears ago, but still make it every day. And I wear that reminder.
That said, the darn thing keeps breaking. Now, while I'm grateful that my marriage is far more durable than the ring, it seriously broke this time. It looked like it was an adjustable ring from the dollar store. I had worn through the inside of the ring.
We brought it to a GREAT local jeweler who didn't seem surprised. He said that 12 years was a long time for my ring to last! Yikes! What does that say about the expectations of marriage these days?
He put extra gold on the inside of the ring - the back half of the ring was replaced. I couldn't bear to have a new setting. My ring is now solid as a rock, but still my marriage is exponentially stronger. And I love that.