I am fascinated with hands; little hands, big hands, wrinkled, weathered hands, manicured hands, the hands of gardeners, mechanics, carpenters, surgeons, clergy, musicians and beauticians. They express who we are, what we do, where we’ve been, and sometimes where we are going.
These are Kezzie’s hands, breaking up a Christmas sugar cookie at a Barnes and Noble cafe. She’s my kind of gal, enjoying coffee shops and bookstores. She was so intent on breaking up her cookie – then she saw my muffin. She got a quarter of the muffin. I got one of the cookie pieces.
That’s the way the cookie crumbles.
One of her current favorite books is “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie” by Laura Numeroff. It is a circular story that starts with giving a mouse a cookie, then he wants a glass of milk, and on and on until the mouse gets another cookie.
The picture has been sitting on my desktop for a month now, waiting for me and my hands to work with it. I’m ready.
I have my Yia Yia’s hands. Grandma’s hand were large, but, Yia Yia’s were quite small. I’d watch her work in the kitchen, kneading bread, wrapping grape leaves over meatballs for dolmathes, rolling balls of butter cookies. I’d watch her hands. They were never still. Grandma’s weren’t either. She cleaned houses until just before she died at 81. I just didn’t know her as well. My mother had her hands, larger than mine, her knuckles swollen from arthritis and her nails perfectly rounded as if they all wore a smile, no matter how much her hands hurt.
While I don’t have my mother’s hands and my fingernails don’t smile, I tend hold them in ways she did; folded one atop the other in my lap, as if in prayer in front of me, or curved backwards at my side when in a car’s passenger seat, where I always start searching for the house keys long before we arrive home.
Kezzie’s mommy doesn’t have my hands, BUT, she holds them the same way as I do and as her Yia Yia did.
Our Kezzie already has hands that are never still. She’s already “working” cookies. I wonder how she will hold her hands. I wonder what they’ll say. I just hope she doesn’t give a mouse a cookie.