Thursday, July 15, 2010

When the Circle Ends

There are things that you have to face with divorce about which you never thought. I remember when I decided to stop wearing my wedding ring. I had worn that ring for twenty-one years. Every summer there was a white "tan line" on that finger. If you look at my ring finger, you will still see the indention from where the ring was. I remember when the ring was placed on my finger. The minister held up the ring and said, "The wedding ring is a circle unending, and so shall their love ever be."

I never thought that I would be taking that ring off my finger permanently. I kept it on for two months into the divorce process. But one day I realized that every time I looked down at my ring, I was reminded of the circle unending. I grieved deeply for that love that I thought I would have until my dying day. But I just couldn't bring myself to take it off. I knew that when I took that ring off, I was officially saying that it was over, and I was not ready to do that.

When this journey started, I missed several days of school. I am never absent, so my students knew that something was not right. I heard one say, "Do you think there is trouble with her marriage?" The other one said, "I don't think so. She still has on her ring."

One day in the spring I was at a textbook adoption workshop. There were probably twenty other teachers in the room. I remember looking around during the break at everyone's ring finger. Every single person in the room was wearing a wedding ring. I could not believe it! I thought to myself that if I were truly honest with where I am in life, I would be the only person here without a ring.

Finally, I remember looking at that ring one day and thinking to myself, "It is time." The marriage was over. I had the papers that said, "This marriage is irrevocably broken." So the ring now represents something that no longer exists. I had originally thought that I would wear that ring forever. But I realized that this was not healthy in my process of moving on. I went to the girls and said, "I need to quit wearing my wedding ring. Every time that I look at it, I am reminded of what is no more. It is not healthy to keep focusing on that." They understood, and I took off the ring.

There is no great wisdom to offer in this blog. (Of course, if there ever is great wisdom, it is not coming from me, but through the ONE who is working through me.) This blog speaks to three different groups.

1. First, there are those who are traveling the same journey I am. Just know that there are others who understand what you are going through. But life goes on, and we will get through this.

2. Secondly, there are those who are still wearing rings and are still so committed to the promises that are represented by those rings. I am so thankful for you guys. I have so many friends that are in great marriages. I thank God for you all. I told a sweet friend last night that she and her husband give me hope that "happily ever after" still exists. If you are reading this today, go to your partners just as soon as you can and tell them how thankful you are for them. Tell them that you love them and are so honored to wear this ring that represents your vows to one another.

3. There are those who are still wearing the rings, but thinking, "Do I really want to be in this relationship anymore?" PLEASE, for those of you who know me well, DO NOT let my story cause you to doubt your marriage. If you are struggling in your marriage, please don't use my journey and the fact that we did not "make it" as a reason to get out. Thank God for your marriage. Go home today and recommit to Him and one another.

Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.
1 Peter 4:8

Footnote: Please know that I am not encouraging anyone to stay in an abusive marriage. There are times when it is very damaging to one's self and the children involved to stay in a marriage. If that is you, please seek help from someone who is trained and equipped to help you through this desperate time.


  1. Amy, your words never cease to amaze me. I just want you to know how blessed I am to be your friend. You have shown me that we must rely on God to get us through those times in life when we cannot do it alone, nor can our friends do it for us. We can all walk through this journey together, but God truly has to be our leader.

  2. Not only did it take a lot of courage for you to remove your ring from your hand but it also took a lot of courage and strength to write this blog and share your story. I commend you for being so strong and hope that you one day find that one person who is honored to call you their best friend. Until then know that God has placed the people around you for a reason. Have a great summer.

  3. Amy, I appreciate your honesty and strength. This takes immense courage! You are a beautiful person and writer. Your words brought me to tears for so many different reasons. Love to you and thanks for sharing your story.

  4. When I read this I thought of my new ring and how precious it is to me. Then I thought of how unselfish and supportive you have been during this joyful time when all along you have been suffering so much pain. You are such a loyal, sweet friend and I love you so much. The Lord is going to heap blessing upon blessing on you for your generous, loving spirit.

  5. Taking off the ring was difficult for me, although I am the one initiating the divorce. But, I took off the ring and moved forward..I will be the first one to tell you that there are days that are still tough (after 3 years), but God has a plan....and i am just a small part of that plan. God bless you and yours.....Alice C.

  6. Amy, What an incredible example you are of unwavering faith. You have used your walk of darkness to shed light, encouragement and witness to those around you. We are all in various stages of single life, marriage or divorce. Your willingness to open up and pour your heart out encourages us to re-examine our own relationships and take appropriate action. We can see that the loving hands of God has embraced you through it all and it reminds us that he is here for us too - no matter what the outcome.