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The Ring of Hope

By June 9, 2024No Comments

 

The Ring of Hope

 

When I was twenty-four, I worked as a chambermaid in a city hotel. I lived in a cramped, lonely room above the hotel that felt like a haunted castle. My wages barely covered the basic necessities, and I struggled with an expensive “pastime”  –  an ED condition destructive behaviours.

I couldn’t return to my parents or my country, as I faced a ten-year prison sentence for leaving illegally. Times were becoming increasingly difficult.

My only support was some jewellery, which I had smuggled across the border when I left. But my condition forced me to sell it piece by piece until I had almost nothing left. The self-harming monster in my head demanded more and more.

The only possession I had left was a silver pocket watch, a gift from my beloved grandfather. It was an engraved 19th-century watch that had been passed down from his father. I always told myself I would never sell it; it was a family treasure, a keepsake to remember him by. But money was scarce, and hope was dwindling. Eventually, I sold the watch.

On a dull, rainy day, I returned from the shop where I had left my last piece of childhood and the people who loved me. I had sold this precious heirloom for two notes. Shame hung over me like a dark cloud. I had sold my memories, my values, everything flushed down the drain. It felt like I had flushed my soul, my spirit. I couldn’t believe what I had done.

What I experienced that day is hard to describe. It wasn’t just depression; it was complete life desperation. It seemed that the only thing left was to decide how I would leave this world.

The weather was dreadful, and my mood was even worse. I wandered aimlessly around the city of Dusseldorf, my head down, not even using an umbrella. I was soaked. Just as I was contemplating my options, I noticed a small shiny object. I looked closer and picked up a beautiful gold ring. I couldn’t believe it. I looked around to see if anyone had lost it, but the town was deserted. I dried the ring, and it began to shine. Within five minutes, the rain stopped, and the sun came out.

From that day forward, I embarked on a journey of transformation, step by step. It wasn’t easy, and the path was far from smooth. There were moments of doubt and times when the darkness seemed overwhelming. Yet, each small victory and every bit of progress fuelled my hope. I began to lift my head and no longer walked with my gaze fixed on the ground. Instead, I faced the sun, letting its warmth and light remind me of the goodness in life.

The ring on my finger, which I have worn for forty-five years, has become much more than a piece of jewellery. It is a symbol of hope and a testament to resilience. This ring serves as a constant reminder that even in the darkest moments, there is always a glimmer of light. It signifies the promise of better days and the strength found in perseverance.

Through the ups and downs, I have learned that things do indeed get better. The journey is filled with challenges, but it is also rich with growth and discovery.

Each step forward, no matter how small, is a step toward a brighter future. So, I continue to wear this ring with pride, embracing its message of hope and the belief that, as long as we keep hoping and striving, the light will always return.

Things do get better…

Marie