I thought I would be wearing an engagement ring on my right hand’s ring finger. I thought I would have my male relatives dunk red and ivory bangles in milk before they ran my hands and wrists ever so daintily through the hoops.
Instead a ring made just for me has been dunked in milk and I’m wearing this coral, almost fittingly, pumpkin spiced stone on my right hand’s ring finger. This is a game changer; and when I say that, I hope that it is a game changer in more ways than one.
The stone touches my skin no matter how it falls. It feels large and foreign. I keep swiveling it around and around, and I attempt to remove it before remembering that I’m not supposed to. That and my knuckle is a kind of speed bump that prevents it from slipping off. But I do end up taking it off, without fully realizing it, because it feels so strange on my finger. I guess this is good practice for a wedding ring.
They tell me I’ll get used to it. Keep it on always, they say. Keep it on in the shower too. I haven’t showered with it on yet because I had to bathe before I could wear it, which was yesterday morning and it’s still dark outside at 6 a.m.
I thought I would have mustard yellow turmeric paste applied to my skin to achieve that bridal glow. Instead, I’m lamenting the fact that Kiehl’s turmeric skincare only includes a mask and not a facial moisturizer. I’m on the hunt for a new face cream to prevent my naturally dry skin from drying out more during the upcoming months of cooler temperatures.
What this ring has given me so far is an odd affinity for my Indian identity. The stone’s saffron color does well to place me squarely in the princely court of actor Ranveer Singh for his award winning performance in Bajirao Mastani, which I only just saw a year later.
Standing in the eastward direction while putting on the ring made me feel as though I was performing surya namaskar, a sun salutation that when performed in the morning must be done facing eastward and on an empty stomach. Yesterday morning I had successfully emptied out my rotund anorexia-recovering stomach somewhat prior to putting on the ring. Too much information? Not enough, never enough. You’ll never understand.
I’m hoping my finger plumps up a bit if and when I gain so that the ring doesn’t swivel so much. It feels like an extra appendage. And whenever that day materializes, we’ll make another trip to the highly Indian demographic locale miles away to have the band stretched and molded.
On that day I’ll include myself in the dining experience at the local authentic Punjabi corner joint. I’ll eat the vegetable filled circular bread that is pan fried in nondescript oil, just as I once did. Hopefully then I’ll trust my body. Trust that it won’t blow up out of proportion.
In my body, I will trust. Trust that it will stave off hunger and signal satisfaction. Trust that if and when I do gain, that extra mass that’s not really extra because there is no such thing as being superfluous, will aliquot itself to where my body needs it.
This ring may have no start and no end unless of course we see it from a bird’s eye view, in which case there is a start an end from the top and the bottom. And that gives me hope, because my eating disorder had a beginning and it most definitely has an end. I have to end it, but hopefully this ring will do as they say and aid me on this treacherous path.
In my body I will trust, that it will stave off fullness by means of contracting colons. I will trust it to pack on pounds, hell, an ounce, where it sees fit. In my body I trust to keep my hunger at bay - to not reach the point of SOS in the form of a whining and wheezing stomach that sounds more akin to a sickly leper than a tigress’s growl.
I’ve been told on more than one occasion that I am the “Mai Bagho” of my family. She was a female warrior who later became the bodyguard of the tenth Sikh Guru after going into battle on a cohort of 40 against the Mughals. If Sikh men are considered lions, the literal translation of the surname, “Singh,” then the women are at par. And I need to growl.
I trust that my body will growl. I trust that my body will not only fight, but lead the fight, even that one waged against my mind.