May 6, 2015

The Story Behind a Diamond

Working at an ear, nose and throat doctor's office, there's quite the eclectic group of patients, the majority being elderly. I was sitting at check-out, the patient's last stop before leaving the office, and our physician's assistant brought around a spry, ninety year old elderly woman. She was quite the character, let me tell you; she rattled off opinions about the other patients in the waiting room with no filter and all I could do was laugh. Not mockingly, because I agreed with her--but she just was one of those people that made you wish to have an iota of their boldness.
via Pinterest
As she was handing me her copay, I noticed the modest marquis diamond on her hand, a smaller diamond but identical setting as pictured, and commented on how beautiful it was. It was a vintage setting, so of course it caught my eye. First, my patient launched into how once she was getting bloodwork done and the nurse was oohing and ahhing over it so much she was convinced the nurse would put her to sleep and steal the ring. Ah, but then...


"The man who gave me this ring died seventeen years ago.
                And I miss him every day."

Not a tear in her eye, nor a quaver in her voice. 
A loving but matter of fact tone of voice as she shared about her husband of, I'm guessing, over fifty years.
"Every morning at breakfast, I wind up his watch and set it next to my coffee and it's just like he's there with me having breakfast."

Once she got started, she didn't stop for a good ten minutes almost. She told me about how her husband always took care of everything for her. She'd see something needing fixed or changed and he'd get right on it. She told me about how they worked as a team; she had the ideas, he put in the work to get it done and get it done right to last.
Just like their marriage.
I was sitting at my desk just soaking up this sweet lady's stories and wishing I could just sit and record her for hours when all of a sudden she asks, "Are you married?"
Me: Way to bring me back down to earth out of my hopeless romantic cloud.
Outloud, I replied the negative. Did anybody freak out with this post's title, by the way? Eh, I doubt it. Moving on.
This dear ninety-year old widow shook a kind finger at me, "I'm going to tell you a secret. Don't take a guy that doesn't have those qualities. Be patient."
I thanked her genuinely and said I'd take all that to heart and let her know if it worked next time she came in.
My patient's reply as she went out the door: "You just wait and see. And I won't charge you a fee for that advice."