Monday, April 15, 2019

The Romance of Hand Holding



Hi Guys, I'm on my own blog today. I'm fresh from vacation at the beach and feeling relaxed. I did a lot of people watching on vacation. I began to notice peoples mannerisms, attitudes, and actions of those they were with. Then I focused on their hands and how beautiful someones hand can be. A hand can touch, convey love, compassion, and caring. Of course this started me to thinking about the different types of hand-holding we encounter through out our lives.

It starts when we are babies. We come into this world helpless. We depend on our parents to take care of us. As we get older, we start to exert our independence, usually when we are learning to walk. This is where most experience hand-holding for the first time. As we take those first shaky steps, Mom or Dad has our small hand tightly in their strong one. It gives us strength and confidence. Even if we falter in our new steps, that stronger hand helps hold us up and keep us from getting hurt. All too soon, we shake off the helping hand of our parents to take steps on our own. Our first real step of independence, but there, in the background, is a parent with their arm stretched out, ready to catch us when we fall.

Next comes that first crush usually around the age of four or five and lasts throughout middle school. We link hands to declare that this person is your special friend. They mean something to you. That one action of taking another kids hand and standing united is the best feeling in the world. You feel connected to someone other than your family. You share common interests and grow your friendship until something happens and the dreaded breakup occurs. 

As we mature and enter the high-school years, hand-holding seems to fade somewhat. Some couples still hold hands, but most express their feelings through hugs and kisses...deeming hand-holding as childish. Eventually we become young adults and enter the world of college, work, or both. We usually meet our first real love during this time. I dated a boy in college that I had a huge crush on. We went out with friends, we hugged, he would kiss me good night, but it was the night when he held my hand for the first time that I remember the most. That action, more than any other, conveyed to me that I was his and he was mine. Joining our hands tells that other person that you are important, they want to protect you and keep you by their side. It makes you feel cherished and that together you can conquer the world and all it throws at you.

Eventually, we marry and after the honeymoon fades and daily life takes over, the hand-holding becomes less and less frequent. For me, that is the beginning of the disconnect. After my divorce, I met a man and we became engaged. He used to hold my hand all the time bringing back those feelings of being treasured by someone and important. I knew we would not make it to the alter through a series of unfortunate events, but the clincher, when I knew it was over was when I reached for his hand and he pulled away from me. That one simple action, that rebuff of affection, declared louder than any words that it was over, I was no longer cherished, and no longer mattered. Of course, I was wrong, I did matter. You don't have to have a special person in your life to be complete.

Other forms of hand-holding I have observed is between women. This is usually when one is upset about something, a breakup, a death, an argument with a spouse or child. Women will reach out to each other. They will clasp hands to help you through that time, to share in your pain, pray with you, and offer hope for a better tomorrow. Nothing is more therapeutic than being held up by your tribe of friends and drawing on their strength to get you through the hard times. 

I mentioned earlier how hand-holding becomes less frequent during marriage. Sometimes it's because a third person is added into the mix. How often have you been at a fair, on the beach, or a shopping mall and observed a couple with a child between them holding hands? They are a small, but mighty family. They are united. The child is safe and secure between his/her parents. The parents are happily connected to each other and the little human they created. As the children grow, become more independent, and get lives of their own, the parents are left behind. They are lost with a "what do we do now?" attitude. At some point, they lost their way, now they have to find their way back to each other and what brought them together in the first place. Reconnecting is the first step to becoming a couple again. A lot of parents will start to have date nights. They laugh at the notion of "dating" again, but eventually get into it. They may go for walks after dinner and as they talk about their day, reach out and take their spouse's hand. It's not as young and smooth as it once had been. It may have calluses from hard work, or the beginning of fine lines and wrinkles. When they get their first grandchild, the cycle starts again, but this time it's the grandbaby walking between his/her grandparents...the older, weathered hands, encased around the smooth new hand of a young child. Then, as aging starts to take it's toll, these couples will reach out and support each other as they walk, ensuring one doesn't fall. It's that truest of love shining through declaring that you cherish this person and will stay by their side no matter what...in sickness and health till death do you part.

Many believe hand-holding is old fashioned, but for some, myself included, it is the truest expression of love and caring.

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Carly Jordynn is an author of young adult, new adult, and middle-grade fiction. You can find Carly's books on Amazon.com and on Barnes and Noble.com.








4 comments:

  1. I enjoyed reading this, Carly. Ive never thought so much about it, but someone taking your hand does make you feel special to them. When we pray, Jeff always takes my hand. It makes me feel more connected to and valued by him.

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  2. Glad you liked it Sandy. Thank you for your comments.

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