I thought I lost my wedding ring this morning. I had just finished walking a dog at the animal shelter where I volunteer when I noticed that the ring wasn’t on my finger. The dog I’d been walking seemed to pride herself on pulling very hard throughout our walk, so it was very possible that it had somehow slipped off my finger while I was clutching my end of the leash. I searched for my ring diligently, carefully retracing our steps and even doing a thorough, if rather disgusting, search through two trash cans full of used doggie poop bags. But I didn’t find it.
My wedding ring is a plain gold band that’s not particularly valuable, and not a family heirloom. But it has obvious sentimental value to me, and I wasn’t happy about the thought of it being lost forever. A couple of my fellow volunteers suggested renting a metal detector to look for it, and while I thought that was a good idea, I wanted to go home and search my house and car first. And lo and behold, we found the ring hiding in my jewelry box. How it got in there I’ll never know, because it’s the one piece of jewelry I always wear. I never put it in my jewelry box, as far as I can remember. But it’s a mystery I can live with because it has a happy ending.
I’ll admit that while I was looking for my ring I didn’t really believe I’d find it. There were so many places where it could have slipped off my finger that I thought the chances of finding it again were very small, even if I used a metal detector. I had resigned myself to the fact that the ring I’ve worn for decades was well and truly gone, and thought that I just needed to accept that fact. But it was found, and now it’s back on my finger, where it belongs.
The truth is, sometimes things that we believe are lost forever can be found again. And as we are starting to cautiously move out of a time when the pandemic dictated so much of our lives, I’m hoping that some of what we lost during the past several months can also be found again. I’m hoping that we can find the patience and compassion that has been sorely missing as we deal with people whose reactions to the pandemic were not exactly the same as ours. I’m hoping that we can find our sense of community again, and remember that we really are “all in this together” and that what affects one of us often affects all of us.
There is no doubt that we have been through some very trying times, and that some of us have faced devastating losses. It’s easy to believe that most of the good things we took for granted before the pandemic have been lost forever, but I honestly don’t believe that’s true. There are still so many reasons to be hopeful….we just have to keep looking until we find them.