April 02, 2010


My mum died ten years ago, when I was 19. While I was at home over the NZ summer, I took possession of her diamond engagement ring.

I wear it on my right ring finger, as that's the only one it fits, apart from the same on my left hand. I wear it slightly off centre, nestled beside a silver ring I bought in Göreme, Turkey, so it's not so starkly an engagement ring, but rather a significant reminder of Mum and where I come from.   

Two days ago, it occurred to me, as I gazed at the light reflecting in the multiple facets: I bet Mum used to gaze at it too, so many years ago, when her love for my father was new and fresh, and her eyesight was still perfect.    

I am the youngest of five sisters (and one brother), so you might ask why I should come to own such an heirloom. The answer is simple: I had a claim on it, and no one objected. When I was about twelve, sitting in the living room, I saw a tiny piece of tin foil on the sofa, and went to flick it onto the carpet. A split second pause, and I saw it wasn't tin foil: it was a diamond! Next thing: "Mum!!" The stone had come loose of it's setting, and Mum hadn't noticed. I was so pleased, and I imagine she was too. 

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Blogger Joanna said...

This is lovely. It reminds me of hearing about how when my mother's diamond came out of her ring - that my father had borrowed the money off her to buy - that it turned out to not be a diamond at all, but she still loves it. And it also reminds me of how I stole a ring from my Oma's jewel box after her funeral when my aunt insisted that we divide everything up right then and there, and kept claiming everything for her family, because she was the oldest sister. The ring I stole is now in my mother's jewel box and will go to whoever gets engaged first. I hope that's me but if it's not, I still have pearls from my Oma that I like to wear every time I have a dinner party, because my Oma was the greatest entertainer in the world and I hope that I've inherited that skill from her.


12:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love this memory of yours Jessie :-)

Jane x

2:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess it's obvious but... don't let the diamond fall out.

2:36 PM  

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