The other day I was watching a new kids movie, Cocoa, and was nearly brought to tears at one thing: the sight of an old woman's hands. The world stopped for a minute and I just sat there studying her hands. Given they were animated, but they reminded me so much of yours. After a minute I tried to laugh it off. Again though, as I sat in my morning sociology class, the look of my professor's hands caught my eye. She's an older woman, her hands are wrinkled and spotted. There I was, almost crying at the sight of someone's hands.
Never would I have thought I would miss such an odd part about you. Your laugh, or smile, or voice, those are the things I am supposed to miss. Of course, I miss all of those things, too, but it's your hands that really make me emotional. Your hands held me in my infancy… held me and rocked me for hours just so I could take a good nap. Your hands mixed cornbread dough repeatedly, because it was my favorite thing to help make. Your hands held mine on the ride home from school. Your hands taught mine how to make the bed and fluff the pillows. Your hands taught mine to play cards. Your hands taught mine to roll pie crust. Your hands taught mine to hold the Bible and read it so. Your hands took care of my dad, and my grandma, too. There are so many memories and so much love in your hands.
Before you passed away, I sat at your bedside. Your thin skin and slightly crooked fingertips laid in mine one last time. That feeling is like no other. A love that is so unconditional: that feeling is home. Good days and bad days, you made it better. Just by being there and offering your hand, a hug, or a witty remark everything else melted away.
So, I want to thank you for that feeling. Thank you for giving me such a sense of security, calm, and peace in my childhood. Without it, I would be a very different person today. Though you are not physically here to hold my hand or walk through life with me anymore, I know you are not far. That feeling of home helps me through the good and the bad, until I get to hold your hand once more.