Pull back the curtain and see how a suspense writer puts the thrills and chills together.


Happy Friday, Dear Readers.

I’ve lost a lot of things in my life. Wonderful friends have moved away and lost touch, and not-so-wonderful friends have drifted for other reasons. Beloved relatives and a close friend from childhood have passed away. I’ve lost my childhood home, and at times, even my self-confidence and sense of identity. All are great losses that have changed me in some way, and hopefully made me stronger and more compassionate of others.

But what about the incidental things we lose along the way? The objects that have special meaning but that we manage to do without once they’re gone? What have you lost that you wish you hadn’t? What missing item do you still think about now and then? Do you know what happened to it?

When I first moved to the “big city” to attend college, gold jewelry was very much in fashion. And I’m not talking clunky, cocktail-ring type gold…women wore plain or elaborate gold bands, chains, and charms with semi-precious gemstones and settings designed to look like the stone was worth more than it was. It was also fashionable to wear every single piece of jewelry you owned at once, and thanks to a variety of boyfriends, I had a variety of not-so-tasteful baubles.

But the ring I loved most was simple. It had a tiny band–I wore it on my pinkie finger. The only decoration was a single garnet, shaped like a heart, but what a garnet! It was such a striking shade of red–at first it appeared black, but if you tilted your hand so the stone caught the light, crimson fire burned deep within. It had a beautiful intensity about it, and I loved it.

It wasn’t an expensive ring, compared to some of the other ones I owned…I believe it was $90 out of the Sears catalogue or somewhere equally glamorous. And no lost love bought it for me–I’m pretty sure this one came from my mother. I don’t know why it appealed to me so much–it was a mass-produced ring. All I know is that it did.

One day I went to wear it and it was gone. I searched the entire apartment and never found it. I also never found out what happened to it, although a psychic once told me that “someone who I thought was a friend” had taken it. Whatever the case, once I graduated and started earning a decent living, I’d given up gold for silver and never thought to replace it. It would seem a little strange for me to wear it now, anyway. It looked like a teenage girl’s ring and it was a teenage girl’s ring. Still, I’m sure I’d take it out of the jewelry box now and then, if only to tilt it in just the right way and watch that red light glow like fire.

What about you, Dear Readers? What have you lost?

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  1. Mystic_Mom

    What a great post…I so wanted that ring! Never got it but I did have some things that I miss that were lost.

    It isn’t always the big things that you miss the most, those you can learn to deal with the loss of. Society understands big loss but what about niggly personal loss?

    I had a book once, an antique art project book, that I loved. It got thoughtlessly tossed by an cleaning parent thinking it was junk. So many of my personal treasures have been thought of as trash or junk over the years…and yet even though I’ve started over a few times with little I still miss a few things.

    I miss my family history book, those stories are gone. The photos I took of the bridge in the fog. Kelly’s cross charm. My chain heart bracelet, my letter from David Eddings and other treasures from long ago. I’d be a terrible pirate, my buried treasures are only treasures to me.

    People ask why I keep the things that I do – some are connections to people and places lost, others are reminders of where I’ve been and what I’ve been through and still others just belong in my life right now…

    Great post Holli! Sorry you lost your ring…but I’m glad you never forgot it!

  2. Kath

    You captured the loss of a deeply personally precious item.
    I lost a piece of a meteorite. In itself a rare and interesting object. But it was truly precious because it is the only gift I had from my maternal grandfather. Where and fell, and who recovered it and gave it to me, all part of the history of Arizona. Sigh

  3. Angela

    There is a sad beauty in the stories of lost precious objects. There are some stories that endure and become more special because of that sad ending…and maybe that can be some consolation to the fact that they are gone.

    I had bought a little gold toe ring (well, it was a finger ring, but I sized it to fit my toe) in Varanasi, India. It was an extravagance that made me feel pretty after months of grubby hippie travel. I remember everything about the moment I bought it, and it represented that little capsule of time to me. I remember the little alley way, sitting on a mat with the jeweler as he weighed my piece of gold to price it, the cows eating wilted lettuce-looking garbage off the streets (I thought between the recycle pickers, cows and the dogs, the streets looked pretty good!), I remember the sounds and the bustle, and the smell of the smoke in the air and how it smelled like a pig roast BBQ.

    I wore that toe ring everyday (summer and winter) until I lost it swimming in the Hudson Bay when I worked in Churchill. Not so romantic…It was at a bonfire party on the beach, we were drunk and thought we’d jump in. But to make myself feel better, I thought, this little ring is somewhere in the Arctic Ocean, and probably be there for hundreds and hundreds of years.

    I thought about replacing that toe ring, but it wouldn’t be the same. I probably would never had appreciated it as much, or kept the memories of it alive in such a vivid way if it were still on my toe today.

  4. Story Teller

    What beautiful writing, girls! I enjoyed all of your stories so much. I’m sorry for your losses, but you definitely have incredible memories and very eloquent stories to tell.

    Thanks so much for participating.


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