Hindsight in 2020.

I have a ring that has been worn nearly every day since it was given to me nearly five years ago. A sort of large “cocktail” ring with a good size “stone” of composite amber in resin, which is then set in silver. I have always loved the deep rich color of the stone and the window setting allows me to see through the thickness of the amber to the underneath instead of just sighting along the top surface.

It’s been a while since I’ve given it a good cleaning of its nooks and crevices, so off came the ring and out came the swabs. Part of my check is holding the composite stone to the light to look for internal cracks and just to delight in the interior structure and visual textures.

Today the light came through the stone very clear. Unusually clear. When I placed the ring on the white cloth so I could fetch a flashlight, I realized what was bothering me. I could see through the stone to the cloth under regular light. The resin was translucent whereas I distinctly remember having to get a flashlight to see through the ring before.

Good thing that I still have some pictures from when I first got the ring. Comparing the initial images of the stone back-lit by an LED flashlight shows that the stone’s interior structure is now easier to see while the overall hue of the stone has significantly lightened.

The pictures also show how the silver has been polished and smoothed in some areas by my regular wearing.

The result of my constant wearing is that the regular exposure to sunlight has bleached the resin’s color, changing the hue of the composite stone from the original appearance of unfiltered wild honey to the current appearance of hot homemade ghee. Brighter and clearer.

And that’s okay with me.

Seeing the change from then to now only makes the ring more beloved. Because in the time span from then to now, I have been through some shit. However, the ring is a reminder of a very good time in my life. It is an encouragement that good times can come again.

Like the composite stone, I have changed internally and externally. The ring endures, and so do I. There may be some who will sniff at the stone being a composite or devalue it now that it’s clear (heh) how little amber is actually in it. Let them sniff their own shit if that is what they value.

This ring is a treasure. It has weathered with me. It will remain with me.

Why did it take so long for me to notice how much the hue has faded? The setting is open on the interior of the ring. My skin tone comes through when the ring is worn. I didn’t notice the fading because I have been seeing myself through the lens of the ring.

And the ring “said” that I am a treasure, worth bearing the weathering of time for, worth remaining and abiding with.

I just needed time to see that clearly.

Happy New Year, 2020.