It was time. 46 days after his death and I was still wearing my ring. It anchored me to a life that I no longer live, bound me to a hollowness that I need to fill. Do I love him less with the ring off my finger? No. Does it in any way erase the years, damage the memories, salt the wound? No. But removing it from my left hand tells my heart that I kept my vows - and it was until "death do us part." The parting has occurred; the love lasts forever but the vows are complete.
And so, here I stand, ringless. Unattached and needing to face the world as "me."
It's funny how there are people who love to share advice - there are those who would see me be alone and widowed, directing my energy into some solitary endeavor like my career, missions, etc., bound forever to memory. Then there are those who want to encourage me to enjoy the independence of singleness - to be strong, powerfully steering my own ship into the land of Alone at Night.
But as for me, who am I really? I am a woman who is a nurturer - I like taking care of someone and I like being taken care of. I like the symbiotic relationship of true partners. I like having someone in the boat with me to work with to get to wherever the destination may be. I'm not a fan of waking up in the morning and not being accountable to another soul. The ring is off and that naked finger symbolizes how cut off and bereft I am of everything that has always meant so much to me.