Some of you may have noticed that I am not terribly forthcoming with personal information. Call me paranoid or a hermit, but there you have it.
However, there are times when if feel that either I share or burst. This is one such case, and even though I’ve managed to sit on this for over a year, I find I cannot hold it in anymore.
Behold the words of my second and youngest kidlet (who had turned 15 a few short months before writing this)
Her Hands, My Hands
Her hands are similar to mine; slender and small to the extreme. They are tan from spending hours in the garden, with calluses from building a shed for our bikes. She never uses nail polish; she says it’s too much of a hassle. She keeps her nails short and does not indulge in expensive lotions or lavish soaps. All in all, my mother’s hands show what a sensible, down-to-earth person she is.
Those hands have taught me several lessons. They taught me how to paint a wall evenly and how to make oatmeal. They enlightened me on how to cross-stitch and bake brownies. They instructed me on how to tie my shoelaces and use the microwave. They taught me to wrap presents and pack a suitcase. Patiently, her hands have trained mine to complete tasks that I will appreciate having learned for the rest of my life. They have also taught me painful lessons. One of them was to behave myself.
Perhaps it comes from our Hispanic culture, or perchance I was an unusually spoiled and disagreeable child. It is most feasibly the latter. For whichever reason, I on numerous* occasions throughout my childhood ended up laying stomach-side-down on my mother’s lap while she spanked me. She did not enjoy disciplining me in this manner and I most definitely was not a fan, but I see now that she was attempting to educate me. At the time I was too hysterical and busy screaming, flailing my legs, and pretending to cry to comprehend it, but I now understand what she was trying to get through to me. She was trying to teach me that bad things happen when you don’t behave.
Just as we look alike, our hands are not unlike each others’. Possibly it has something to do with genetics, or maybe it is related to our similar personalities. They are the same size and width with the same nail shape and finger length. Neither of us chews our nails; we find it repulsive. I rarely paint my nails and she never does. My hands are as tan as hers from spending hours at lacrosse practice. Not only do they have similar appearances; we also use them in similar ways. I tend to gesture and wave my arms a great deal when I speak, as does she. We both have very small penmanship and write very quickly, and share our dislike of using pencils.
I intend to make a living from my hands in the future. My ambition is to become a surgeon when I am older. I expect to use my hands to save lives. It is what I wish to do, but it may not be so. Perhaps I will follow in my mother’s footsteps and pursue a career in writing; she writes reviews for books that people send her as an occupation**. Maybe I will be like her, and live off of my pen; I can think of worse fates. Though I must say, I do believe I’d rather use a scalpel.
(copyright Y S-V, April 9, 2008)