Tuesday, February 23, 2010


There's been some...talk (alarm)...shall we say...about the condition (scary appearance) of my hands, in the comment section of my blogs lately. To which I now respond~No, it's not contagious. Yes, I'm aware they're corpse-like. And yes, I've tried lotion.

Years ago, when I was about five or six, we were given the opportunity (forced) to play "Red Rover, Red Rover, Send Feeble Kid Right Over." That SPLENDID (cruel) game where you held each other's hands tightly and waited for the most malnourished, anemic child to attempt to break the link~usually ending with the wind being knocked out of them and/or broken ribs.

Well, if ever there was an excruciating moment in my life, it was every one of those. Not because I was the fragile child, as we've already established I was the BASE OF EVERY PYRAMID. No, not that. But because some brat missing a thought/mouth filter would inevitably scream, "EWWWWW!!! WHAT'S WRONG WITH YOUR HANDS? THEY'RE LIKE GRANDMA HANDS!!!" And then wrench theirs away violently, like I was covered in boogers and warts.

Now, obviously, this could only raise my self esteem to lofty heights, as I held my head~and hands~high, like an Olympian with their Country's flag. And so I was obliged to do something that I'm not proud of people...but it was necessary...for survival...in the killing fields known as recess playground. I made up a story...a lie, really. And I know what you're thinking. "That's how she started to blog." And you'd be right. But it had humble beginnings as self preservation and only recently BLOSSOMED into shameless fame seeking.

"It's not my fault that my hands are this way," I'd fabricate. "When I was little, my dad was working on his car, and he put this oil stuff in a tray, and told me not to touch it. But I ACCIDENTALLY got it aaaallllll over my hands. And this is what happened." And I'd hold my hands up for inspection, and the kids would "Oooooo" and "Ahhhhhh" and look at me with disgusted rapture. Suddenly, I was kind of like The Phantom of the Opera~a little bit feared, but also weirdly compelling and pitied. It did the trick. They'd take me by the arm and grab their friends to Show and Tell about my tragedy~which would always end in an ominous whisper about "special car oil stuff" that you should never, ever, EVER get on your hands.

Fast forward to 6th grade square dancing, and in between every Virginia Reel, I would lick my hands, hold them together to make them warm, and then take hold of my partner's hand, letting him think the spit was sweat. I know. And I'm sorry, Troy.

"Heavenly Father, why would you do this to me? People make fun of me, and I'll never be able to hold a boy's hand without being embarrassed!"

"Compassion? Being compelled to stay virtuous and pure? You're welcome."

Fast forward even MORE years, and you have two innocents, holding hands over an altar, as they are told that on top of our hands, our Savior places His hand, and the only way for us to break up our eternal marriage would be to first remove our God. Truer words never have been spoken.

Still more years pass, and fresh from the heavens, an entire baby hand wraps tightly around one wrinkly mother's finger, as one by one, I clutch four beautiful infants to my overwhelmed and humble heart. And I nurture and I feed...and I plead. And I wipe, and I hold and I squeeze.

The story goes that a marble statue of the Christus was placed in a town square. Vandals came in the night, and broke both hands off, which could never be repaired. There was talk of removing or replacing the statue, but finally an answer came. A plaque was placed beneath the broken Christ. It simply said, "I have no hands but yours."

And one day, years from now, I will hold them up to my Heavenly Father for scrutiny. And I will Show and Tell Him everything that they did. And He'll listen...and I can only hope and pray that He will hold them up to ME, and whisper, "See? Do you see what they were capable of? Did you ever THINK that so much could come from just ONE SET OF THESE?"

And then I will look, and I will realize, that they never were just "grandma hands." They were His. And chances are, they have always been exactly in line with the age of my spirit.

And they will be BEAUTIFUL to me.


Erika Wilder said...

Lisa-Remember, I can totally relate! I'm sure I showed you. I have the same problem with my hands! We are just special!!

Anonymous said...

Lisa - this is just beautiful! You are a wonderful writer. I enjoyed reading this immensely. - KaDe

Ster said...

You must be a hard worker! Were you raised on a farm? I Love these hands! And yes I do agree they match the age of your spirit. I Love YOU...and your hands

Ster said...

What with these nubs Anony?

Lisa said...

KaDe, thank you! Hon, you almost undid all the love with the nub comment. Sooo close. :) Erika, yes I do remember you're special, too. Did you lie about "oil stuff?"

Erica said...

That was awesome. Yes, I'm crying - again. I always cry. I'm made of water and it all spills out like a flood behind cardboard gates. I can't help it. Do you think my Father in Heaven will give me credit for wussy tear ducts? I love you. Thank you for the post. :)

Neen said...

Lisa, THAT WAS AMAZING! I loved it. And I love you! I have to say I feel very protective of your hands! If anyone teases you about them I want to KNOCK THEIR HEADS OFF!Now I won't have to, I'll just send them to your blog! =0)

Krista said...

I'm left in awe - almost speechless. I said "almost." I just say Amen to what you wrote and I loved your perspective. I never noticed your hands for anything other than all the good that you do with them until you pointed them out. At least your flaws aren't on your face - like, what am I supposed to do with this extra long nose? Never mind. Don't answer that. Your post has almost made me erase the trauma of your fart post. I love you, man!

Mimi Sue said...

Loved your post. Oh so true about what we DO with our hands and not about how they look. When you get to your 50's it gets better, then you can look forward to a few liver spots. Sooo attractive. Mimi

kara elmore said...

Funny that the ad to accompany this beautiful post is about WARTS! You've GOT to remove that!! It's distracting!

Well - first I started to laugh and giggle as I, too, remember the "story" I told about MY hands. It was how Chris - our brother - threw something down the disposal. Asked me to reach in and get it - only to TRICK me and turn ON the disposal ... leaving my hands crippled and scarred. It was only when I was OLDER (like 17) that I felt "cool" for my hands. But I had to endure the terrible "spring fling" dance w/ Brett who promptly made fun of my hands and ran and told Austin (my boyfriend who had NEVER come close enough to examine a hair on my head) that my hands were GROSS and DRY!!! But because I had never actually HELD his hand, he couldn't prove it. Whew - saved! Fast forward to a date w/ Justin (jerk!!!) and he freaking EXAMINED my hands after holding them for a mere 4 seconds.... asking WHAT HAPPENED??? Stupid S***** - what do you THINK?? So I told him I had run out of lotion. Idiot crap.

But, like you, I wept over my hands. Over and over. But I also realized it DID keep me virtuous. Really. There was NO way I was going to let someone hold THESE - let alone any other part of my body!!!

Now - 3 children later (+.5) and I pray every day that my girls get my hands. To save them from other things - to help them grow BECAUSE of the trial ... and also so they can grow a QUICK sense of humor! We did - and look where we are now ... STARS!!!!!!

Lisa said...

You women are all so great. Glad to have you in my life. Sounds simpering, I know. But true nonetheless.

Brenda @Just a Bed of Roses said...

I had to leave when I first read this when you posted right to the bathroom for a good cry. I never noticed your hands at all until you brought it up.
Totally left me wordless because as you know I am still learning the language here.
I agree with Kera...to please bless her girls with those hands, they have made you and her a better person, honest truth. (and if it keeps the boys away, a bonus!)
Your a precious woman and I mean it.