500 Words On The Importance Of Hands

500 Words On The Importance Of Hands

Really, it's a metaphor for life.
1560
views

A baby grips its father’s single, pointer finger. A mother gently cradles its head. From soft back rubs lulling you to sleep, to a light caress on a cheek from a lover. From a first, hesitant holding of hands to a familiar interlocking of fingers.

Life is made up of hands. Hands that hold and fingers that feed, even palms that slap and fists that punch.

On a cold January morning, I woke with a jump. Eyes wide and eyebrows raised, I bounced out of bed, a toothless smile plastered on my face. It was my birthday. It was not only my birthday, it was my fifth birthday. My little feet picked up their pace as I bounded down the stairs. I collided into my mother who proceeded to hug and kiss me, and then sing a horrible rendition of “Happy Birthday.”

Outside was my father. He was working on one of his many family projects that would end up uncompleted in a haphazard tangle of bolts and screws and wood in the backyard. His hands were always calloused from his work. I dashed outside as fast as my small legs would carry me. He turned quickly at the sound of my footsteps, a smile overcoming his face as he crouched down to one knee. His arms were open and warm as I leapt into them and he swung me around.

“Happy birthday!” He said, enthusiastically. I could feel his big, stubby fingers combing through my hair.

Then he held up a hand, a hand much larger than my own, and counted the five digits on it. “Jamie, you’re a whole hand!”

And on my tenth birthday, I was two hands. On my fifteenth, I was three—or, two hands and a foot. All of my life has been the counting of fingers and hands as I grow older each year.

It is human nature to fear the future, as people fear death and the dark. We all fear the unknown-- we fear what we do not know or understand. But there is nothing scary about hands. We know hands. Hands are what brought us into this world, into the open arms of doctors and nurses. Hands are what we will leave with, a loved one’s gentle grip on a motionless hand. Each year of my life is just another finger added-- each finger shows experience, each hand shows wisdom.

In the end, we all grow up and we all grow old. Not everything ends up the way it is supposed to or the way people plan. Sometimes things go wrong and there is nothing to be done about it. However, you can choose how you react to it. Circumstances may change and life can become convoluted, but what counts is not what happens to you—it is what you do about it. Each person can decide how good or bad each finger turns out to be. Each person can determine the outcome of his or her own life-- if they decide to.

I have decided to let my hands wrinkle with my experience and to let them become calloused with my hard work. I have decided to look at my life without fear.

After all, life is only a bunch of hands—and what is so scary about that?

Cover Image Credit: firedepartment.org

Popular Right Now

A Letter To My Best Friend On Valentine's Day

Because you are my ultimate Valentine.
324430
views

To my beautiful best friend,

Warning: This letter is about to get extremely cheesy. I am talking four cheese lasagna cheesy. But no one deserves a love letter like this more than you do.

This Valentine’s Day, I want to express my love for you. On this wondrous occasion with which most people express their love to their significant other, I want to tell you, my best friend, how much I cherish our friendship.

SEE ALSO: A Valentine's Day Love Letter To My Girl Best Friends

You are the ultimate love of my life. Boys have come and gone but you remain a constant; for that I am grateful. You have been there for me when my family could not be; for that I am grateful. You have been my backbone, my rock, and all those other clichés people use to describe the people they care about, and yet you have been so much more than that as well; for that I am grateful.

All my love this Valentine’s Day goes out to you, my friend, because you do not receive it enough. You have picked me up out of the dirt, brushed me off, and kissed my wounds more times than I can count, and I will never be able to thank you enough for that, but I am sure am going to try.

Thank you for the midnight cries. Thank you for the midnight laughs. Thank you for ordering way too much food with me and still just eating it all. Thank you for the advice, both solicited and unsolicited. Thank you for telling me what I need to hear, even when it isn’t what I want to hear. Thank you for the silly pictures. Thank you for the stupid inside jokes. Thank you for making bad decisions with me. Thank you for laughing with me and laughing at me. Thank you for the endless memories.

SEE ALSO: An Open Letter to the Best Friend I've Ever Had

More than anything, I want you to know that I love you. I love you. You are the family I get to choose, the one I go to when I have nowhere else to turn. You are the one I know I can always run to, whether we saw each other yesterday or haven’t seen each other in a year. You have played a part in molding who I am as a person, and I am so grateful for having such an amazing person affecting my life in such a positive way.

With all the love in my heart,

Your friend
Cover Image Credit: https://www.facebook.com/natalie.pederson.5/photos

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Blood Doesn't Determine Family

Blended families are just as much of a family as a traditional one.

346
views

If you look above, you can see that have a very large family on my mother's side. Between my grandparents, aunts and uncle, cousins and my own immediate family, we're at thirty-three members and counting. All branches of our family tree have busy lives, so we don't get to see each other as much as often as we would hope to. Christmas is the one time a year where we all finally get together for the evening. If you sat in on our holiday party, you may think that we have a couple screws loose, but there is no doubt that you would be able to feel the love radiating from room to room.

If you look at the picture I chose for my header, you can see all of the cousins gathered for our yearly picture. Dysfunctional, of course, but you can tell that love is there. Would it surprise you that out of our entire huge family, less than half of us are blood-related?

I come from a blended family, and I wouldn't have it any other way. Blood does not determine family to us. Love does.

Divorce can be a messy thing, especially when children are involved. Both my aunt and uncle had remarried into relationships that already had children. For the most part, none of us can really ever remember a time when we weren't considered family. We don't ever look at each other as not being related. We never will. Family to us is the love and support that is shared unconditionally between us.

As I said, you would never be able to tell we weren't blood-related unless I told you. Not only do we all look similar to one another (which again is odd, because if the marriages had never taken place, we would just have a ton of doppelgangers running around), but the love and passion that we radiate is unmistakable that we have a bond that will never be broken, let alone determined by biology.

Blended families tend to get a bad rap sometimes from some of the horror stories that can come from second marriages. Not only that, but some people still are stuck in the idea that the only socially acceptable type of family is one where the lineage is clear and concise. Although I can see where these people come from, I don't believe that because there is a lack of shared genetics between all of us, our love is any less strong.

Family is those who will answer a call or text late at night because you need someone to talk to. They're the ones that you end up staying at their house and talking for hours when you meant to make a quick trip in. They are there for you no matter the situation and always believe in you one hundred percent.

Traditional families have a lot of love too, undoubtedly. But please, do not tell me that my family is any less of a family of a family because of its makeup. We have just as much love between us as families with the same bloodline. Blood does not determine the amount of love and affection between all of us. It never will. We will love each other as much as a traditional family. We never look at each other as a mixed family, so please stop treating us as such.

I've said it so many times, but I'll remind you once more. Blood does not determine family, love does-- and I love my family more than life itself.

Related Content

Facebook Comments