In a long cold Buffalo winter I warm myself in thinking of my favorites. What I love; what holds the world together, under all the ice. I suggest that holding the ENTIRE world together, at this very moment, are two troves of precious treasure: grandma hands. and baby thighs.
I have witnessed both lately. Grandma hands fall into the beatific category. They encompass all: joy and sorrow, of course; disappointment and deliverance; the miraculous and the ordinary. They are hands that have seen and touched it all. Thank you Jesus: Grandma hands heal.
Baby thighs sit solidly in the Buddha realm. My niece’s thighs at six months looked like a pound of butter had been melted and poured into them- one pound each. I love them. They are dimpled and perfect. Great contact with the earth. They keep Baby from tipping over, sometimes- a kind of centering weight.
On the baby thigh-to-grandma hand trajectory we encompass so many expressions of our selves that it is not even a trajectory; it could be a chart of every cloud formation, ever. Every rock formation, every riverbed imprint- no, better call it the shape of the water in the river: see it now- no, now. We are a multitude in our lives. There is no one place that every body inhabits.
When I think of our bodies in this way, over time, not just mine, but everyone- they become fluid, a stream of mercury flowing and dazzling my ability to pinpoint anything other than 98.6 degrees. What do we do with them? What is our gesture?
Baby thighs demand one thing only: adoration. Grandma hands open, they stretch out even in their sleep to open to the unseen and unknown- these hands bless and also, they receive.