One of my favorite songs is Grandma’s Hands by Bill Withers. Recently, I heard Kristy Lee sing it, and I invite you to listen to her rendition. Always, whenever I hear the song, I think of my mom.
In my extended family “Grandma” is the guardian of all-things-possible. She’s the one to whom the 40+ grandchildren call to fix a problem. She’s the one the 100+ nieces and nephews look to for a pat on the back or a warm embrace. Grandma’s opinion trumps all others and her prayers evoke miracles it seems.
My siblings and I are aware of our mother’s power with our children. When Grandma says something, she is politely listened to – we may not be. If Grandma says this or that needs to be done, this or that is done – no questions asked. Somehow the younger among us have decided that Grandma is the queen.
And, they are all aware of Grandma’s hands.
Gnarled from arthritis and time, Grandma keeps them hidden as best she can. When I was a child, her fingers deftly made quilts and dresses; churned butter or turned the crank for homemade ice cream. She tended one garden after another, and when she could, she escaped the noise of yelling kids and painted peaceful scenes in oil on canvas.
At ninety years old, my mom’s hands, Grandma’s hands, have retired from such things. They now turn pages more slowly, struggle to pick up coins or button a blouse; but, for their limitations, these beautiful hands still reach out to hold or embrace…the newest baby, the child crying, the teenager needing encouragement, the mom or dad who needs advice. Time may have taken its toll, but love just gets refined.
Blessings to all on this Mother’s Day….