Grandma sat feebly on the patio bench. She didn’t move, just sat with her head down staring at her hands. Her grandson came and sat besides her, asked, “Grandma, you are just sitting here staring at your hands, are you OK?”
“Have you ever looked at your hands?” she asked.
He slowly opened his hands and stared down at them.
Grandma smiled and related this story:
“Stop and think for a moment about the hands you have, how they have served you well throughout your years. These hands, though wrinkled, shrivelled and weak, they have been the tools I have used all my life to reach out, grab and embrace life.
They braced and caught my fall when as a toddler I crashed upon the floor. They put food in my mouth and clothes on my back. As a child, my mother taught me to fold them in prayer. They tied my shoes and pulled on my boots. They held my husband and wiped my tears when he went off to war.
They have been dirty, scraped and raw, swollen and bent. They were uneasy and clumsy when I tried to hold my newborn son. Decorated with my wedding band they showed the world that I was married and loved someone special.
They wrote my letters to him and trembled and shook when I buried my parents and spouse. They have held my children and grandchildren, consoled neighbours, and shook in fists of anger when I didn’t understand.
They have covered my face, combed my hair, and washed and cleansed the rest of my body. They have been sticky and wet, bent and broken, dried and raw. And to this day when not much of anything else of me works real well these hands hold me up, lay me down, and again continue to fold in prayer.
These hands are the mark of where I’ve been and the ruggedness of life.”
So did you really look at your hands?
The final forming of a person’s character lies in their own hands.
– Anne Frank