I have a friend with wedding fever. With hopes that she doesn’t incessantly blab to her now-boyfriend about her expectations of the not-too-distant future, she’s focusing her obsession on me.
This is fine. Because despite the bitter cynicism and biting sarcasm I display 24/7, I actually love weddings.
Correction: Promising your soul to another person gets a big ol’ “blah blah blah” from me, but I love everything that goes with weddings.
Dressing up in nice clothes? Check!
Eating cake? Check!
Partying with a good DJ and an open bar? Check!
And in this case specifically: Getting new jewelry? Check! Check!
That being said, allowing her to voice her matrimonial gushings has lead to trying on jewels in the store. And when one friend is trying on rings with a true intent, apparently jewelry store employees have no issue with her single friend trying on the blingiest of all the blings and exclaiming how she’s gotta get herself a baller boyfriend.
Trying on rings in stores had me realize just how much my preferences have changed over the years.
Back when I was a wee Jo with not nearly the enthusiasm I now have for shiny things, I had simple tastes. A little solitaire sitting atop a few-millimeter-wide band that’s yellow gold in color was what I always thought I’d want:
It’s simple. It’s practical. It’s…
Holy crap! Only a quarter of a carat and in a shade of metal that clashes with my porcelain skin!
It wasn’t too long until that was no longer in the running, and that was at about the time that my then-boyfriend and I were settling into domestic tranquility and considering our lives together forever and ever.
It was at about year #4 when my wedding fever hit, and I told him in no uncertain terms that it was about time to pony up and get the show on the road. He responded a few months and a bunch of pressure later by doing Very Bad Things that left me no choice but to pack up my dignity and let him be.
Homeboy would have been saddled with a not-so-massive payment for this shiner:
Alas, post-breakup I bought a fakey for myself from WalMart, gazed at it for about a week, and decided that I needed to better refine my tastes in both jewelry and in men.
After settling into my move to Chicago, I eventually came across a man who moved my world. (Fucker.) He made me want to run faster, jump higher, and be an all-around better person. (I repeat: Fucker.) There was this constant, amazing awestruck pride that made me think, “Wow. This could really be it.” (Must I repeat the noun I’ve already used twice?)
On Christmas I opened a package within and bigger package within a bigger package to reveal the only jewelry I’d ever attached any sentimentality to. It wasn’t an engagement ring, but I hadn’t ever seen anything that sparkled quite like that.
That man and I went through a rough patch, him realizing that it was about time to make it or break it. The reconciliation 30 whole days later brought closeness, comfort, and a look toward the future.
I would have rallied to continue wearing the sparkly Christmas ring with just a sparklier band added to it, but then I got a little wise and figured out that I could get something even bigger and better:
He ended up choosing the “break it” option six month later, so I did like I did before and bought the ring for myself. I’d look at it and think, “Wow. Now that’s perfection!”
That bauble has more than sufficiently replaced the Christmas ring as my favorite, to the point that I parted with the ring he gifted me by gifting it to my favorite drag queen. She tells me that it makes a bitchin’ toe ring, and that makes me happy beyond words.
And although my ring really is beautiful and what I’d theoretically want as my forever-and-ever ring, going ring shopping with no budget in mind had really turned me on to something new.
These days, I’m not fucking around. We’re adults. We already own houses, have established careers, and have enough disposable income to make me say DAAAAAAAMN each I look at my hand for the rest of my life.
Yellow gold mini solitaire, sapphire three-stone ring, and kick-ass blue ring, you can all suck it. There’s a new sheriff in town: