Sma' Talk Wi' T

Current world events, politics, news, history, culture, trivia, religion, and the quirky

Grandma’s Hands

with 6 comments

5 Generation Photo by Pamela McFarland Walsh

I am truly blessed to receive wonderful emails from all over the world. They help inspire me to share my thoughts and strong emotions that they evoke with others on my blog. My most visited posts have been about women, some beloved like the Princess Diana and inspiring Nicole Johnson’s Invisible Woman, and others sadly like Casey Anthony.

My friend and fellow chick blogger, Toccata sent me a beautiful email on “My Grandma’s Hands.” The email said it was from an unknown photographer and author. I researched the photographer and the poet and came across a wonderful memorial to Pamela McFarland Walsh’s grandmother. Please click on the post’s title to read and see more pictures of the long-lived women in their family. With our fifth grandchild expected in June, we too, have been blessed with beautiful family. One day I hope to have five generations of hands in one photograph to hand down to my great-great-granddaughters to show them the strong women in our family.
Grandma, some ninety plus years, sat feebly on the patio bench. She didn’t move, just sat with her head down staring at her hands.
When I sat down beside her she didn’t acknowledge my presence and the longer I sat I wondered if she was OK.
Finally, not really wanting to disturb her but wanting to check on her at the same time, I asked her if she was OK. She raised her head and looked at me and smiled. “Yes, I’m fine, thank you for asking,” she said in a clear voice strong.
“I didn’t mean to disturb you, Grandma, but you were just sitting here staring at your hands and I wanted to make sure you were OK,” I explained to her.
“Have you ever looked at your hands?” she asked. “I mean really looked at your hands?”
I slowly opened my hands and stared down at them. I turned them over, palms up and then palms down. No, I guess I had never really looked at my hands as I tried to figure out the point she was making.
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 shriveled and weak have been the tools I have used all my life to reach out and 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 serve our country in time of war.
They have been dirty, scraped and raw, swollen and bent. They were uneasy and clumsy when I tried to hold my newborn son. The left hand is 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 my spouse.
They have held my children and grandchildren, consoled neighbors, 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, but 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.
But more importantly it will be these hands that God will reach out and take when he leads me home. And with my hands He will lift me to His side and there I will use these hands to touch His Face.”
I will never look at my hands the same again. But I remember God reached out and took my Grandma’s hands and led her home.
When my hands are hurt or sore or when I stroke the face of my children and husband I think of Grandma. I know she has been stroked and caressed and held by the Hands of God.

I came across this Youtube video of Bill Withers, of “Ain’t No Sunshine” fame, singing about his grandmother.


Written by smalltalkwitht

January 12, 2009 at 1:24 pm

6 Responses

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  1. I seem to read so much junk on the Internet. Thank you for sending “Grandma’s Hands”.


    January 12, 2009 at 4:53 pm

  2. Thanks ===I recall the strong women in my life. They have been with the Lord for years now but the memories are strong.


    January 12, 2009 at 5:03 pm

  3. I just got done looking at my hands..Grandma’s right, my hands have a long history of always being there for me in times of happiness, sadness and especially in times of praying..I never got to know either of my grandmothers. One died before I was born, and the other one had no desire to know me..Oh well, I was compensated by having 2 of the best parents a child could ask for..They were and will always be my heart..


    January 12, 2009 at 5:04 pm

  4. Loved it. At age 60, I am very blessed to have my Mother still around. She is as strong and tough and intellectually sharp as ever. All three of us kids got world class educations (something Mother never had) and now she lives a very comfortable life in retirement. However, I remember Dad, on numerous occasions, saying the family wouldn’t have a pot to p*** in if it weren’t for Mother. Dad worked for the money and Mother made the money work for us. This day, and every day, I thank God for my Mother.


    January 13, 2009 at 7:46 am

  5. Are these Amazon women. LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL


    January 13, 2009 at 7:47 am

  6. What a beautiful tribute to all grandmothers 🙂 Thank you for posting this. Grandmother was the BEST cook in the whole world…and no one will ever be able to outcook her 🙂


    January 23, 2009 at 8:55 pm

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