to find Patti Singleton these days.

Naked Without Them



Naked Without Them; Gold & Silver Memories

My wedding ring set has such a bad track record.  You’d think that I would want to drop it down the sink or bury it in a drawer. Never. Like most of us, that set of rings has had its ups and downs, through no fault of its own.

Before their life with me, the rings had a life on the finger of a young bride, full of high hopes for a happy future, with the man of her dreams. That dream died quickly and lives were shattered. The rings sat in a box, in the very back of a drawer, forever. Who knows how long it really was, as rings have no sense of time.

My friends, the preacher and his wife, gained possession of the rings through their family ties. They finally found a way to aim the rings on a path towards a happier future; much happier than living in a drawer full of undies and unopened packages of socks.

Admittedly, the groom (whose bride would wear the rings) was being treated for leukemia, but surely he would live to rejoice in his recovery with his new bride? The rings could have a new life too. The betrothed were living in the hospital and did not have the freedom to go shopping for wedding rings. So when the preacher and his wife drove across the mountains to perform and witness the hospital wedding, they brought the set of rings to offer as a gift to the couple. The rings would be redeemed and the newlyweds would live happily ever after. The gift was gratefully accepted.

The groom’s wedding band was chosen from the offerings of the preacher couple and the bride’s aunt. He simply chose the one that fit the best. The wedding is another story altogether, and you are welcome to read one version of it here. Most of you know that the story didn’t end so well. The groom left this world and his bride less than 2 months after the ceremony. Once more, the rings were marked by tragedy.

That was 4 years ago and I wear Paul’s wedding band on my thumb now. I just recently moved my wedding set to the ring finger of my right hand. I read somewhere that this was the custom for widows in…? I can’t remember what country that was. My wedding ring finger is still much thinner where the rings once sat, and I’m sure that time will be successful in healing the finger, if not my heart. Either way, the rings and I are happy for the company along the way.

The other piece of jewelry that I cherish is the heart locket that you see in the picture. It was already special to me, but now I only take it off to shower (so I actually am naked without it). Sealed inside is some resin mixed with my forever-3-year-old grandson’s ashes. We lost him in April and I can still hear his voice and see those bright blue eyes,

I had more to say, but I lost my steam somewhere up there in that last paragraph. I can say how grateful I am that I have these special things, and I truly would feel naked without my gold and silver memories. Some people don’t want such constant contact with objects that hold sad memories. That’s odd to me. When I adjust the rings or the clasp on the locket chain, I may shed a tear (or a bucket of them), but then I usually end the tearful session with a smile for all the happy memories.

Do you have something special that you feel naked without? Maybe something romantic or funny or magic to cheer us up? Well, then please share it with your friends here :>)

Peace Out,


Author: Patti Singleton

Pursuits of happiness include gardening, walking the desert, reading, writing, photography, traveling and genealogy.

30 thoughts on “Naked Without Them

  1. This is a beautiful, poignant, piece of writing, Patti. So heartfelt. Thank you for sharing this lovely piece with us. I tend to hold on to “pieces” that hold heart felt memories, a few special pieces of jewelry, a Chintz teapot, a pocket watch, an old treasured book. The story of your rings is such a beautiful story and the locket is precious. Be at Peace, Patti, knowing that it is love that is eternal.

  2. You are honoring them…so beautiful!

  3. Beautiful, Patti. Focusing on the jewelry shows so much about your heart.
    I would be lost without my support stockings and medi-alert bracelet. That makes me sound old and sickly and I don’t feel either!

  4. Such poignant stories but what a wonderful way to keep your grandson with you. I keep intending to see if there’s a service which can preserve my wife’s ashes over here for me and my daughter.
    xxx Massive Hugs xxx

    • Thank you, David. Everyone feels dif about it, but the presence of the necklace does offer me some comfort. It was the right choice for me and my 2 adult children.
      Thank you for the massive hugs.

  5. Ah, beautiful, Patti. I wrote a blog called “My Wedding Ring, My Lucky Charm” ( I was going through a stressful period with health issues and getting much too attached to the outcome of my writing. I needed to feel Vic’s love surrounding me, so I put my wedding ring back on after a few years of not wearing it. In a few months, I took it off again and then wore it for the week of my son’s wedding since I knew that would be both wonderful and a time of grief. I don’t wear my ring now, but it’s on my altar, a bracelet on a statue of Ganesha, Vic’s favorite Indian deity. Sometimes I slip it on my finger and give it a little kiss, thank Vic for his love and care, and give the ring back to Ganesha for the day.

    I did not know that Paul died just two months after your marriage. I can’t imagine how hard that must have been. And then losing such a young grandchild so soon after. I love that your have this locket. Wow, you’re still standing! I need to read about your wedding so thanks for the link. And I’ll share this piece at FB in a few days–after my readers get time to look over your book review.

    You are on a fast roll and this is so beautiful.

    • Thank you, Elaine. I love the ceremonies of your life. So glad that you have Ganesha to care for your ring. I look forward to reading your post.
      Our family has had too many loses since 2009.
      My muse is stirring…

  6. Wow Patti. This story literally brought tears to my eyes, (ok, many) such a sad, yet beautiful post. I am so sorry for your losses. It’s really something to meet such wonderful people here and yet sad to know that everyone has a sad tale somewhere in their pocket. So glad I found you! ( or you found me?) oh ya, we’ve been through that, 🙂

  7. Oh, I forgot to add to your question. Yes, my aunt died over twenty years now, but she was really the mother that was vacant in my life (read my book) I wrote,,,My heart ached so bad that if not for the pain to remind me I had one I thought it had shattered., She wasn’t materialistic and her only thing of value was her gold wedding band which I cherish and sometimes wear it on my thumb too! xo

  8. I always say we meet for reasons and seasons Patti! 🙂

  9. Grown men shouldn’t cry….*sniffle*

  10. Sentiments… free flowing through your words. You have kept those artifacts near to yourself… that is a beautiful thing to do.
    Hope you are having a good day.

  11. This is such a beautiful post. After 20+ years of marriage, my husband says I should have a “bigger” diamond ring. I keep telling him the small engagement ring we could afford as graduate students is the only one I ever want to wear. For me, the rings on my finger are about the love and memories of our lives together, not a statement of any other kind.

    • Exactly! Not the weight of the diamond, but the weight of the love and memories…
      Glad you have a sweetheart along on your journey:>)
      Thank you so much for the kind words.

  12. Thank you for sharing your personal stories and for visiting my blog. I’m thankful it had led me to yours …your post reminded me that I should never take things for granted but always to appreciate things that I have at the moment. Your writing is beautiful. I hope you’re having a lovely day 🙂

  13. Yours is a bittersweet tale. Love. Joy. Loss. Redemption. Very powerful. Then there’s the story of coming to this from the opposite side of the “street” as it were.

    For example, over the years, I have had a few items (jewelry, artwork, etc.) I had difficulties parting with. I really liked the pieces, but wasn’t above to overcome the associated unpleasant memories. I had cared enough about the item to not want to simply toss it or give it to a thrift store. I discovered passing such an item to another, for whom it resonated, filled me with joy. Both in having found a happy home for a lovely artifact and giving both the new owner and the artifact a chance to create a happy story.

  14. What a lovely, poignant post. I imagine that if my husband leaves before me, that I would continue to wear my rings. I actually have three: the first wedding ring, the second one bought because he lost his first one and wanted us to still have a pair that matched, the third is not a wedding ring, but would have been if he could have afforded it way back when. Maybe there’s a post in here. I love that you wear Paul’s ring and the locket. As many have said, it is your way of honoring them and your life with them. I would do the same.

    • I’m glad that you enjoyed this post, Marie. Of course, they are all close to my heart, even when I don’t have these special symbols on my body.
      Thank you for joining in on this.

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