April 24, 2006
A long time ago, I read a poem, maybe it was an ode to a woman’s hands. Appropriately it was in a nail salon. I’ve thought about it several times since I’ve first read it, but, I haven’t really searched for a copy of it.
Last night, I thought about it again. I had a rare treat, #2 was at home and we had supper together. He had borrowed a copy of one of his favorite movies and wanted to watch it. So we did and we talked about the things going on in his life and how the prom went. (the night before) We talked about his jobs and school, the GF and other things. Finally he decided to lay his head in my lap so we could continue to share the sofa, but he could lie down. Before long I was rubbing his head and twisting his hair. He fell asleep like that. Mind you, he is 18 years old-6’2” tall and he weighs about 250. It was a bittersweet moment. My ‘baby boy’ is a man-child. Just a few weeks until his graduation, then a few more and I’ll be making the Exodus.
I know…what does this have to do with hands? After I covered up the kid, I was thinking about how many times I have soothed him, his brother and sister. How many brows have I caressed or lovingly comforted? I thought of all the touches; cradling, stroking, slaps, pinches, kneading, fondling, patting and holding I have done in my life.
I’m proud of my hands. There was a time when I could barely hold a pencil because of carpal tunnel syndrome. As is my way, I thought, this too shall pass. Only, it didn’t.
It’s taken a long time for me to regain the strength in them-most jars don’t give me problems.
I think I have large hands for a woman. I wear a size 9 ring. I suppose if I lost some more weight, they’d be smaller. My hands look like a female version of my father’s. Yet, they also look like his mother’s. I have longish fingers, which have come in handy. (excuse the pun) I can play the piano with out any trouble. And, from pinky fingertip to the tip of my thumb; the span is 8 and ¾ inches.
Opposable thumbs are one of the things which separate us from animals. It’s amazing to me the things we can do with our hands and the power they are capable of.
Ever get one of those limp-wristed, pansy-ass, handshakes? What does that say about a person? Last August, at the beginning of this school year, I met a young man who quite impressed me. He stepped up into the bus, thrust out his right hand and said in a very confident voice “Hi, I’m Jacob Evens, pleased to meet you.” I shook the boy’s hand and said “Hello, I’m LA and I’m so glad you’re with us today, Jacob.” You know every time since that day, when I need/have to shake some one’s hand, I think of Jacob and his firm little handshake. I’ll never forget that one.
A colloquialism we have here, is saying you know something like the back of your hand-but do you really know the back of your own hands? Got any scars? Moles, sunspots or other identifying features? I encourage you…take a look…marvel at the uniqueness of your own two hands. Then lend a hand or hold a hand-either way you’ll feel good.