His large calloused hand envelopes my smaller one. His grip is firm yet gentle. The heat from his palm reaches past the barriers I have constructed around my heart. I feel safe and secure, sheltered from life’s ups and downs.
We bow our heads in prayer and the tears, surprisingly, flow down my face. I am reminded of the incredible talents a man’s hands can create and the total destruction. The strength and power in those large competent hands. The ability to love, caress and gently guide a wayward child back on course. The capacity to crush a dream, frighten a woman or toddler with brutality.
Quick snapshots of life flash through my mind, like an old fashion home movie slide show.
His hand reaches out and gentle strokes my cheek. My eyes gaze up at him in admiration. His palm cups against my face and the warmth overflows my heart with love.
For a moment, way back in time, I remember a similar hand, gently reaching out and removing my glasses before the blow of his palm leaves a bruise on my cheek.
Sitting on the soft leather couch, my bare leg draped over his broad t-shirt clad shoulder. His strong back resting easily against the couch, his thick fingers encircling my ankle.
My heart melts when I remember the feel of his hand in the small of my back, gently guiding me through the crowds.
The kitchen those hands built, with love and sweat in each swing of the hammer, now hold a gun as he threatens to kill me.
That giant hand holds the back of my head before his soft sweet mouth crushes down on my delicate lips, making me cry out for more.
An intimate moment, as I ride behind him on his motorcycle and his arm reaches back. He drapes it across my leg and cups my calf in his strong hand.
His hands rest lightly against the steering wheel when he realizes they are dry from working construction all day. He casually spits in them, hoping for some natural moisturizer. A deep memory is triggered and my fear engulfs me as I try to scramble out of the car before the crack of violence splits my lip.
A stranger really; that man who held my hand…
And yet… his touch opened the flood gates of so many memories and emotions.
Life is funny sometimes…
Never underestimate the power of touch and remember; you never know what your kind gesture may heal.