The Ring

My 9-year-old loves to draw. Recently she is making fashion pictures of girls’ clothes like a mini-designer. She gives them to her friends at school almost like a business card. Her friends will say things like, “Make me one with boots and a dress!” or “Give mine a Taylor Swift T-Shirt!” She makes them on 3 X 5 index cards using colored pencil, and they are very detailed and precious.

As I watched her one night, she made one for me of a lady’s left hand wearing a wedding ring. The long fingers and palm shape did indeed mirror my own ringless hand. She said, “Mommy, this is for you so you can imagine yourself married and in love!” Big awwww! Of course I teared up, but tried not to let her see. I know I want the “in love” part, but I don’t know if I really need the married part again. Though the more I reflected on it and the universe’s funny was of giving do-overs, I thought, ‘Why not?’ Why not dream of a big day, with a big dress and a big love? If I don’t even think those things are possible, how can I expect them to happen? Also, the look on my daughter’s shiny, sweet face of a love that can be imagined with just a ring and a dress… I mean, how can I squash that enthusiasm? She’s just beginning to dream of romances, and handsome princes coming to the rescue. Can I, or really how dare I, give her the reality-check grown-up version of broken hearts, bad dates, and the horror of moobs? The answer is, I can’t, and I won’t. So I take the card and keep it with me to remind myself of the power of a little girl’s wish.

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