Monday, January 5, 2015

Beautiful Hands

I lie in my bed at night and I think about my grandmother's hands. They were smallish and dainty. They had the marks of age, but those marks didn't take away from the elegance of them. And she had really great nails. They had little ridges in them and they were always filed and she sometimes used a mauve pink color. My sister and I agree that she had the best nails. I remember laying with my head on her lap in the church pew on Sunday mornings and she would rub ever so lightly on my face with her hands. I loved that. It never crossed my mind at the time, but they were were just so pretty. I now see the beauty of her hands.

When it snows, I love to look outside at night. When there are no tracks and there is a blanket of pure white. It sparkles and it's so quiet and peaceful. My breath is smoky cold.  I've always thought I could live where it snows because I really enjoy how the snow covers up all the imperfections. It's just smooth and silky. But I realized this weekend that I like it when it snows because it's quiet and peaceful. The snow usually brings ice here and everyone slows down. People stay indoors, some stay home from work. Cars stay in garages. Outings are cancelled. We all slow down. We actually stop to see the beauty of the fresh fallen snow.

We forget the beauty in things because life gets in the way. We are all just human and there's bills to pay, meals to cook, things to learn, kids to teach, houses to clean, etc., etc., etc. When we went to the beach this summer, I knew I was seeing beauty. The moon would reflect on the ocean at night and it was mesmerizing. I could have sat there and looked out on the ocean for a hundred years and never gotten tired of it. But lately I've realized there's beauty in the simplest things around me. I love how the water runs off the edge of our pool. I love the color of the pansies in the front bed that Kyle plants. I love my kids long lashes when they are asleep. A beautiful Californian sunset took my breath away when my friend sent it to me on my phone tonight. Stunningly beautiful. As beautiful as the snow.

A River Runs Through It is one of my favorite movies. The story touches me, but I fell in love with the scenery of that movie. It is absolutely beautiful. The boys grow up fishing in this awesome river in Montana and every time I watch it, I'm just taken. I feel like I'm there and every time I watch it I cry at the end. That place is beauty.

As we've cleaned out her house, I've taken several glass pieces of my grandmother's home with me. And I find myself really, really looking at them. Mostly because it triggers a good memory for me. Memories are getting me by these days. But this morning when I was brushing my teeth, I started staring at this tiny green, depression glass ice cream sundae cup. It was in Nana's hutch all my life and I played with it but I guess I never really looked at how beautiful this dainty little glass was. It sits on my sink now and we use it every day. Who says I cannot use this beautiful green cup every single day. I think I will. It is really beautiful.

My grandmother taught me lots of things. She taught me kindness and humility. She taught me forgiveness and generosity. She taught me love. But now that she is gone, she is still teaching me things. When you loose someone, your mind goes to those places that you haven't thought of in some time. You long to see them, so you rely on your memories. Memories of beautiful hands. Even though she's gone, she's still teaching me to see the beauty in things.