#Holding hands, love, romance, sunset, and whatnot…. what does one write about it? Maybe I should write about love, how about, how a hand can silence thousands of voices and how someone’s smell can make you feel at home despite of being million miles home.
I wonder how many of have really held the hand someone we love… not in the passing like a loose link, but truly clasp, with pulses of the wrists beating together, fingers mapping the knuckles and nails like a cartographer learning a country by heart. The pressure, the warmth whispering a communication, and you responding to it.
Yet holding hands can come with so many intonations, like the my mother holding my hand well she didn’t have time for it, maybe Bhagi holding my hand to precise my little finger as took my first step, the grip that said, “bade chalo” I am there if you stumble. When I held my daughters fingers as they took their first step, the immense pride I felt.
The first day at school, as my grandmother held my hands through the maze or what looked like an ocean of people at Padma Sheshadri the grip that said, this is the world at large and you can swim, that imbibed strength in me, as I held my daughters hands when they went school, i could feel the apprehension, the need for assurance that they will be safe, an instinct in me telling me bundle her up and take her home. I did exactly what my grandmother did, I knelt beside her, and told her, “baby, this is a wonderful place, where you will find children just like, you will have teachers who will tell you stories, and a playground where you can play, I am just outside the gate waiting for me when the long bell goes I shall take you home.”
Or should I share those times, when my friend held my hand to restrain me from bashing someone who was bothering us, after all one cannot hold a gun when one is holding hands.
Maybe I should talk of holding hands, connecting to one another and this chain of humans holding each other’s hands creating a powerful community bonding.
Of course we don’t talk of the bully hands that hold you down, maybe violate, or suffocate another; we pretend they do not exist.
Coming back to holding hands, sometimes reaching out and taking someone’s hand is the beginning of a journey, at other times it is allowing another to take yours.
When I was in the hospital being treated for burns it was the terminal ward, it was evening and the Parish priest from our church came for his evening courtesy call, he sat by, made some small talk and enquired if they would like him to say a prayer, they replied yes, he then invited them to join him, which they did hands clasped eyes closed and the priest rendered the prayer, this was so moving, in retrospect I wonder if this is the nearest we humans get to whatever God is, when we hold hands and listen.