Monday, September 6, 2010

Timeworn {The Sunday Creative}

hands of 87 years
{ photo credit gaspi*yg via flickr Creative Commons }

I pick her hand up from the bed cradling it in mine. So small and frail. Her hand is my hand only worn down by the passing of time. Made soft by the beating and receding waves of time. Long bony fingers encircled by rings of gold, now tarnished and aged like the fingers they rattle and clink on. Worn down until tired and thin, unable to hold things tightly. I squeeze her hand a little tighter and blink back the tears, time is running out.

I look around the room, take in the things on the walls, her form in the bed. The light is streaming in through the sheer curtains at the lowered angle of a late summer day. It casts a golden hue over everything in the room. Making the items look less worn out and more vintage. The golden and orange hues of a an old photograph. Like a timeless antique fondly ogled over by visitors instead of just stuff. Stuff that has been worn down by time and use. Most only bearing special meaning to those in this house, those gathered in the room at the bottom of the stairs, waiting for their time, their moment to say goodbye.

I take in the rug and the worn paths, thinking of the time spent pacing these floors with colicky babies, with nervous anticipation and with worried fear. Time spent in joy and pain, and the everyday mundane. I look back at my grandma, so small and frail yet still so vibrant and present, even in her half conscious state. Time may have softened the edges but it don’t not wear her down, it never broke her. She never fought against the waves of time. She didn’t run headstrong into the crashing waves being knocked over, she didn’t try to outrun the waves, she just rode them. She let time take her where it needed to do what it needed, she was there for the ride, making the most of the smooth times and keeping her head above during choppy times.

I feel the tears welling up, someone so inspiring, so loved. I lean down and kiss her hand, my hand, the skinny boney hands of our family. I up her family bible running my hands over the time worn and softened leather cover. I glance at the names on the inside, births, deaths, weddings, time passed through the stages of life and family. I gently open to her bookmarked page, her favorite psalm and begin to quietly read to her. Letting the waves of time pass over us, washing away any fear or longing. We just are. Hands entwined, young and old, past and present. One ride ending as calm and accepting as it was lived, and another learning, learning how to ride the waves with her head above water calm, accepting, and free.

This post is part of The Sunday Creative at Madeline Bea: Life Set to Words.
The Sunday Creative


Cristina said...

so beautiful.

Justine said...

these hands are so beautiful as are your words

One Photo said...

What a beautifully crafted post.

Marji said...

Love the photo, love the words. Perfect capture of timeworn.

Joan said...


Liz said...

Wow, what an amazing post. So sweet, touching and meaningful.

Sandra said...

All of this was beautiful and lends so much dignity to a difficult time. I love the use of "hands" as a way of tying past present and future.

Unknown said...

beautiful photo and beautiful reflection. thanks for sharing.

Maegan Beishline said...

Beautiful, Melissa! So touching!