Children hold hands. They just do. As I walk the children to school this morning, I notice how many of us hold hands naturally. I wish we were all doing it.
When do we stop? When did we become so self-conscious?
Normally, we might hold hands to pray, to pull someone to safety, to keep our balance, to lead someone along, or to keep together in a crowd.
Whatever the case, when my hand rests in yours, it says, “I’m here with you.” It’s a mark of belonging, of protection, and of love.
Maybe in other cultures, in other communities, hand-holding remains common and abundant, natural and obvious. But here, I wonder if we aren’t making physical gestures of belonging, protection, and love enough.
I watch my daughter enter her new kindergarten class. Complete strangers! She finds a little girl (a pony tail and sparkly sandals) who also likes turtles and Polly Pocket, and as I watch them interact, I see that smile and movement together that signifies I found you; I see you; I like you.
When it’s time to circle up on the carpet with the teacher, those two hold hands. How natural, how obvious.
Living with flair means I hold a hand. Could I do it? Could I walk hand in hand with neighbors, colleagues, friends and not just my children? Here, take my hand.
I found you; I see you; I like you.
(Photo “Hold My Hand” courtesy of Elizabeth Ann Colette)