For many, they see a hand, wrinkled and old, limp and lying still.

For me, I see the hand that clasped mine when my toddler legs wobbled with unsteady steps.

I see the hand that held my little girl body, bent and crying over some childhood hurt.

I see the hand that slipped carefully over my adolescent one that tried to pull away.

I see the hand that gently rested on my arm as I poured out a young woman’s pain.

I see the hand that sweetly lay across my cheek as the tears of a new mother’s worries streamed down my face.

RELATED: Don’t Take Your Mom For Granted—I’d Give Anything to Have Mine Back

For many, they see a hand creased and twisted, no longer useful.

For me, I see the hand that clapped the loudest for my achievements and the one that clasped around me the tightest when I failed.

I see the hand that reached out to catch me when I was falling and the one that picked me up when I did.

I see the hand that held me up high when the world lay me low.

And now as I take this precious hand in mine, it is the one I can’t bear to let go.

So now, as I clasp her hand, I hope that in some small way I can comfort and carry her the way she has always comforted and carried me.

And when she ceases to be able to hold my hand, it is my greatest hope that she will continue to do so in my heart.

RELATED: My Mom May Be Dying, But She Will Never Leave Me

I cannot deny that this hand—my mother’s hand—is no longer youthful or vibrant, but the once smooth skin, now wrinkled and lined, tells the story of a life well lived to those blessed enough to hear it.

Perhaps now, when one looks upon her hand, they won’t see a hand that is old and wrinkled, limp and lying still. They will see what I have always seen as I see now—love.

Originally published on the author’s Facebook page

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

You should also check out our new Keepsake Companion Journal that pairs with our So God Made a Mother book!

Order Now
So God Made a Mother's Story Keepsake Journal

Sherry Parnell

A full-time writer, personal trainer, and professor, I am the author of Let the Willows Weep and Daughter of the Mountain. An alumnus of Dickinson College and West Chester University, I live with my husband and sons in Glenmoore, Pennsylvania. I am currently working on my third novel entitled The Secrets Mother Told.

When a Parent Dies, Part of Your Heart Will Always Be Broken

In: Grief, Loss
When a Parents Dies, Part of Your Heart Will Always Be Broken

I wish I could tell you it gets easier. I wish I could tell you this won’t hurt. I wish I could tell you that you are in control of the situation. I wish I had all the right words to take the pain away as you watch your parent endure this horrific illness. It is difficult to even put into words how it feels to watch a parent who was once larger than life slowly deteriorate. When a loved one becomes ill, life as you know it dramatically changes. Watching your parent die is absolute hell. Watching my larger-than-life...

Keep Reading

I Am My Mother’s Thighs

In: Grief, Motherhood
Mother and daughter, color photo

I write a lot about thighs, about body image. I think a lot about my thighs. I blame this on the fact that the most spoken sentence out of my mother’s mouth was “do my thighs look big?” Literally, until the day she died, I heard, “I’m sorry you have my thighs” or “Gosh, C (my oldest child) is so lucky she didn’t get my thigh genes.” My mom despised her thighs.  My mom felt less beautiful because of her thighs, she felt less whole, she never did truly love herself. It’s heartbreaking really.  It was always her thighs.  In...

Keep Reading

My Mother Loved Us So Well

In: Grief, Grown Children, Loss
Vintage photo of mother with daughter

“Hi, Mom, anybody home?” I knocked on the door and walked in at the same time. “You didn’t tell me you were coming over!” she’d call back, slapping her face for added drama. “I’m sorry, I didn’t because I didn’t want you to feel like you had to make any food for me.” “But it’s not right not to have anything for you!” she’d always counter back at me. “HarRAM,” she’d say in Arabic, a phrase she used, which loosely translated means “you poor thing!” RELATED: I’m Turning Into My Mother…and I Think That’s Pretty Great And on we’d continue....

Keep Reading