Love is a Circle

Our deepest gratitude to Raja Rashid Idris and Sarah Carol Shun for allowing us to share their journey in finding their "Anchor of Love" anniversary band, written personally by Carol.

Rashid and I met on 21st June of 1992. We were both on summer holidays, he was back from the UK and I was back from the States. We spent 2 months hanging out with each other almost every single day and when it was time for me to return back to America, Rashid suggested we continue dating long-distance. Never a believer in long distance romance, I nevertheless agreed. A semester quickly passed and Rashid invited me to spend my winter '92 break in London with him. He gave me a friendship ring exactly 6 months after we first started dating. It was a Cartier inspired Trinity ring with thin intertwined rose gold, white gold and yellow gold circles. It was beautiful in its simplicity and every time I rolled it around my finger I would think of him. :)

In Spring break of 1993, Rashid came over to Los Angeles to spend 9 days with me. I gave him a yellow gold Carreraycarrera ring from Spain. It had beautiful carved horse heads all around it. As Rashid is a Sagittarius and is also born in the Chinese Year of the Horse, the symbol of the Horse is especially meaningful to him. At this time we did not know that Muslim men could not wear gold. :(

When Rashid and I got engaged on February 6, 1994, we were both young, idealistic and had stars in our eyes. My engagement ring was a flashy solitaire in a diamond encrusted white gold setting paired with a plain wedding band to match. Rashid opted for a broad band of emerald cut diamonds also in a white gold setting. We had been erroneously told that Muslim men could wear WHITE gold. Again we did not do due diligence on this matter. :(

A year later I was expecting Rayhan and my fingers grew too chubby to wear both my rings so Rashid bought me a thick plain yellow gold wedding band to tide me over the pregnancy. By then he was also working long hours at the bank so for security reasons he too opted for a plain white gold wedding band.

When Rayhan was born in 1996, it took me almost a year to lose all the pregnancy weight so by our third anniversary; we decided to change our rings again. Rashid modified my original engagement solitaire into a classic Bunga Tanjung traditional ring design by adding a circle of Lazare cut diamonds around the solitaire. I opted to redesign his ring completely and changed it to a very manly large emerald cut sapphire framed by baguette diamonds all around. Both rings were still very flashy and eye-catching.

By 1997 we were both working for my Father in Construction and Development. As we literally learned everything from the ground up, flashy, expensive rings had NO place on the site so we both stopped using our wedding rings and wedding bands completely. :(

In 2004, we both hit a few rough patches in our lives and we thought perhaps we should change our rings yet again to something much simpler and more suitable for daily use. Boy o boy did the designer get our order wrong! We had asked for a simple design with a just a simple ring for him and 3 small diamonds signifying "I Love You" incorporated into my matching ring. What we got were 2 very heavy platinum rings with a very stylized curvy ribbon and filigree beading design with etched hearts carved on the sides. It practically screamed nouveau riche but as we had ordered it through our friend's jewelry company we both did not have the heart to tell him how much we felt the design was so over the top! After a few months of use, into the safe the rings went, never to be seen again. Back to being ringless again! :(

In the last 20 years, we have gone through many changes in our lives together. We have grown physically larger (oops), emotionally stronger (woohoo), mentally wiser (hopefully) and spiritually more enlightened (Amin). We have learnt not to take things or each other for granted and to appreciate everything that we receive be it good or bad from Allah SWT our Creator. After all everything is HIS Will and there are NO mistakes in life, only lessons to be learnt.

We finally decided to start wearing wedding bands again last year as we have survived many obstacles in our marriage and have emerged even stronger and more in love with each other than when we first met in 1992. Rashid and I are BFFs and I wanted someone who could "get" us to design our rings. As I don't believe in coincidences, I believe I was directed by our Creator to Wendy Lor the owner and designer of UniqueWeddingBands. After almost a year of conferring and designing, Wendy finally created what I believe will be the last wedding band set for us. Wendy delivered our rings to us last night and it was love at first sight. Along with the wedding rings came her story for the concept of the rings.

This is Wendy's personal note to us on the concept of the "Anchor of Love" for Raja Rashid Idris & Sarah Carol Shun. "A design concept based on the filigree theme, sitting on a ring of weight, hence the "Anchor of Love" was conceived. I have made the patterns very elaborate to make it look grand on the outside. This is to symbolize your social status. But what makes your rings very special is the weight. Yes! The weight of your rings. Your UniqueWeddingBands are deliberately made to feel heavy. The weight of the ring is like the anchor to a ship. It symbolizes strength. Your rings serve as a reminder that you can make a difference to those around you. A relationship is to be worked on and not to be walked out of. Because you are making it work, your advice on relationships carries weight. You are an anchor for each other and all those around you. God Bless for Eternity." ~ Wendy Lor

Both of us really like our new wedding bands and despite the additional weight both rings are really comfortable to wear. Rashid’s ring is made out of Suasa, which is totally acceptable for Muslim men to wear and mine is made out of white gold. The design has no embedded gemstones and its intricate design alone makes it feel like we are wearing a tiny piece of fine art from Wendy Lor. Thank you Wendy for making such beautiful rings for us. Thank you Chai Li for transcribing our very long-winded love story so faithfully for Wendy and keeping us in the loop over the last year on the progress of our rings. May our Creator bless you both always! Well this is our love story over the years and over many sets of wedding rings and wedding bands. May Allah SWT continue to bless our marriage with HIS mercy, love and grace. Amin. :)

"Our new Anchor of Love" rings:

Picture courtesy of Sarah Carol Shun.

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