Wedding ring….and google.
A hundred million odd hits later…and I’m back.
I sit at my desk toying with my wedding ring. I love it. It belonged to my Mamgu, of whom I still have some fond memories. I have been so very lucky with my wedding jewellery. Such beautiful rings. Rings* are often laden with memories don’t you find?
Here it is with my favourite unicorn. (I will learn to take a decent photo soon).
Until death us do part. (Oh how I wish we could have said those words at our ceremony).
Yet this is perhaps the one aspect of weddings that does not seem up for negotiation. If you are a woman you will wear a wedding ring.
So let’s start with a history why do we wear them at all. There seem to be countless mystical historical ideas but the least disputed concepts stem from days of yore. From the thoughtful Ancient Egyptians take, that a circle is everlasting, by having no beginning or end, and the association with the sungod Ra to the slightly less romantic “barbarians” using rings to fetter their chosen chattel to their home. However the most agreed upon history is that from the Romans where a man would buy a gold ring for his wife as a sign of possession (although it did impart some helpful benefits to her too). Oh yes, we ladies have been wearing wedding rings for millenia.
Indeed for most of us reading this we wear our wedding rings on the third finger** of our left hand. Even the place of the ring was decided thousands of years ago. The lovely Romans thought the vena amoris (the love vein) was the vein which connected the ring finger directly to the heart and gosh what more could be a sign of love.
I don’t want to burst the love vein bubble but the dorsal venous network of the hand does not provide a link direct to the heart (in most people – perhaps you are one of the lucky ones?). The veins of the hand are sadly a little more complicated. Yet even the English Book of Common Prayer asks that the ring should be placed upon the third finger of the woman’s left hand.
It’s seems set in stone (or at the very least print). I know as a child/teenager I never wore rings on my ring finger for fear of never getting married. (Although I did wear a ring Bean gave to me – read I bullied him into buying for me – when we had been together for a year on that finger and it felt good to pretend I was engaged).
So with a little potted history why I am chomping to be so het up about wedding rings?
Let me state for the record now. I am extremely happily married to my Bean. This love is not for show. We’re not one of those secret wedding/lifestyle bloggers who pretend to be married and happy. This lady doth not protest too much!
Yet I don’t love wearing my wedding ring for a number of reasons.
1. I don’t enjoy being marked as married. This sounds ridiculous. It may link to my slight reticence about changing my name and not enjoying being known as Mrs Bean. I’m very happy to be married but why do I have to tell everyone? I’m certainly not the girl who needs to worry about getting hit on every day. (Those days have passed – they were on a tiny island in the middle of the Pacific). Did I wear a ring when back when I was single as a sign of my availability?
2. I don’t need a thin band of metal to stop me from being unfaithful. Whether I wear a ring or not, it is not the power of the ring that will stop me. Trust is not found in a few grams of platinum.
3. Is it in fact a statement of oneupmanship? I am happy and you there with your sad lonely hands, cannot possibly be as happy.
4. In the winter it falls off, and in the summer it twists and turns and can be wretchedly uncomfortable. I don’t have endless monies to be making the ring a perfect fit. Yet even in the times where it is happily sitting upon my finger I start fretting that I cannot feel it. Oh to have a low maintenance brain!
5. Why do we place such importance in a band of metal? Do we really believe that the ring is important or do we believe what we are told to think?
Am I just making a mountain out of a molehill. Is it that important at all? Is a wedding ring more than the sum of its parts?
Rargh, do I just enjoy being contrary? Why don’t I just accept the status quo. I’m lucky enough to have a beautiful ring should I just wear it?
I know Bean will reply to this post because I know he does love wearing his wedding ring and probably has a few things to say!
Are you excited to wear your wedding ring?
*I was once given a family claddagh ring by a boy. Oh the folly of youth. I belive he is married to a lovely chap now. I was a folly indeed! (I did give it back when we parted ways).
**Or fourth finger. I generally like to write ring finger but oh the repetition!