Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Family Jewels

I’ve always had “a thing” for jewelry. I guess I inherited this trait from my grandmother, who wouldn’t be caught dead without her beads and matching earrings (she even wore them “to meet her maker”).  My mother, on the other hand, was modest when it came to bling. Christmas earrings during the holidays (screw-on, for she didn’t have pierced ears), a string of beads when she went to church. The only rings she owned were her wedding band and engagement ring, unlike her mother, who had at least a few diamond dinner rings.
             Apparently, the jewelry gene skipped a generation, but came back with a vengeance with me. I only wish I had more fingers to put all my rings on, more ankles for my ankle bracelets, more wrists for my wrist bracelets, more necks for my necklaces (though one chin is quite enough, thank you!), and a whole host of ears for my hundreds of earrings (though I’d look quite the freak if I did!) I don’t know why I have this jewelry infatuation (and it’s not as if the jewels I wear are expensive—believe me, they’re not!).  I just enjoy them.
            But here’s the question about jewelry and every other possession. Do we own them or do they own us? Case in point, just this week, I was scheduled to take my little emerald ring in for a check-up. I bought the thing 8 years ago, and it came with a guarantee; the only hitch is I have to have it inspected by the jeweler every six months. This particular ring has quite a history already; twice they’ve had to replace a stone or two, and once they replaced the entire ring due to faulty prongs. It’s getting to be a bit of a pain (who wants to be held hostage every six months by a ring, after all?) and I’d almost opted to forgo the check up and take my chances this time. But at the last possible moment, I decided to go. And sure enough, as I took my ring off to hand it to the storekeeper, I noticed that a stone—once again—was missing! It actually must have fallen off on my way to the shop. So I had to leave my emerald for repair yet again.
            By now you probably know (if you’ve read this blog more than once) that I’m always looking for messages from my friend, “the Universe.” But this time I was mystified. Did the missing stone mean that I’d be better off without my ring? Or did it mean that if I’m going to have a ring then I should commit to taking caring of it? Does the Universe want me to know that I’d be better off without all these belongings? Or is the message that if one does have belongings one should treat them with care?
            I’m guessing it’s a little of both. In any case, I’ve vowed not to buy any more jewelry (of course, gifts are never rejected!), but I also vow to do my best to keep my gems in good shape. As for diamond rings, I have only one—inherited (no surprise) from my grandmother. And, like the emerald, it sure ain’t my best friend! 

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