Posts Tagged ‘death of a spouse’


This Ring: An Ending (Long Version)

Posted on: January 6th, 2013 by tobendlight

Wedding_ringsThis is an extended version of “This Ring: An Ending,” a meditation to be said on the act of removing a wedding band. My initial goal was to create a concise prayer versatile enough to be used either after a divorce or after the death of a life partner, which I explain on the post for the short version of this prayer. Eight months after writing it, my sense is that a longer prayer – with some specific directions – would be a useful alternative. Three optional sections are identified with [brackets]: two with instructions, one with optional language. This prayer will appear in my forthcoming book, Jewish Prayers of Hope and Healing.

This Ring: An Ending (Long Version)
When I put your ring on my finger
I wrapped it around my heart.
A dream fulfilled.
A moment ripe with potential.

In removing this ring from my finger
I release my heart
With grief and joy,
Uncertainty and faith,
In unequal measures.

[Remove ring; set it aside or hand it to someone, the reverse of the wedding process]

Ancient One,
G-d of compassion and grace,
Let this moment be a blessing
So that healing continues
To flow into my hours and days.

[Grant my children
Comfort and relief,
Solace and understanding,
In the days and weeks ahead.
Let me be a source of strength and consolation for them,
An unbroken source of love.]

Grant me the insight
To honor the past and embrace the future
With dignity and passion,
Wisdom and thanksgiving,
Kindness and charity.
Then, G-d of life,
I will return in wholeness
To a life of joy,
To song and dance,
Laughter and praise,
As a beacon of Your light,
A source of hope and peace.

[Add Sheheciyanu, Kaddish, Birkat HaGomel or another reading, perhaps a poem or song.]

© 2013 Alden Solovy and All rights reserved.

Postscript: For some people removing a wedding band will be a Shehciyanu moment. For others, it’s clearly a Kaddish moment. Someone who escaped abuse – or survived an accident in which their life partner perished – might consider using Birkat Hagomel. Some will use this prayer in a solitary setting. Others will use it as part of a healing ceremony of their own design that takes place in the company of friends or family. Here’s a prayer “For Bereaved Children,” for healing the grief of our children, appropriate for parents to say whether the loss is by death or divorce.

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Photo Credit: Jeff Belmonte’s Photostream via Wikimedia Commons

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