Sunshine upon these hands…….

I is an odd title. Yet one that seemed most appropriate on this day. I have not slept since the previous day, so at 10am I have been awake a complete twenty four hours.

Sleep is something I relish. It is a privilege rarely given to me. So I appreciate it when I am allowed to soak myself in its fullness and escape. I have been an insomniac (never liked that word) since about two years of age. I had to be alert most dutifully in the night because of the monster, my father who would appear at random times during the night. It was better to be prepared than not at all and not be able to deal with the full assaults upon the little girl.

Sleep comes more easily to me now as an adult woman living through childhood abuse and a domestic violence marriage. Yet it still has that nodding off quality to it while being highly aware of your surroundings. I have tried every method and madness to aid me in sleep. Every doctor prescribed and drugstore promise swallowed with hopes of restful slumber.

The only time I remember of being in a restful slumber is two events. As a young girl I was invited to a sleep over for a birthday party. I did not think my father would let me go, yet he did. I remember that night as all the girls sat around and giggled about pretty bows and the boys on the playground; I began to nod off. The room was warm and safe and I allowed this brain and body to go off of watch and rest. I do not remember the actual moment of sleep. Yet I do remember attempting to wake up. I was so warm and safe I had no need to do anything but sleep. I remember the voices of my friends and giggles because I most likely was drooling or dreaming. All I know is I never wanted to be released from that moment.

My second time of sleep where I easily went into the rest was with my third son Alexander. He was about eighteen months old and was in the hospital with a seriously high fever and a kidney infection.  I had been by his bedside for hours. As he slipped in and out of sleep calling for me and let me hold him while he wrestled with a temperature; he fell asleep. As his mother holding him and he grasping onto me like I was his only hope I too rested. I entered a sleep full of sunshine and love for my child. I knew I was doing everything I could for my son. He knew I loved him. And in that peace we rested because deep within our hearts we both were safe. He was safe because he did not have to watch his mother being beaten. I was safe because when I was caring for my children in sickness or injury was the only time Larry my husband, their father left me alone.

So today as I struggle with pain, intensified by my body’s refusal to sleep; I lay with the sunlight flitting through the lace curtains on my windows. It lightens the room with this golden light. It warms the aches and eases the pain felt deep within to the bones. The pain of this disease and the pain of being here alone to deal with it. I am on my side looking out the window, slightly wishing it was night because I want to rest.

My hands are across the top of the covers and light flickers over the words tattooed on my hand and wrist. My eye catches the lines, marks, bumps and bruises which complicate my hands. The marks which define me as less than dainty woman. One who will tear out carpet, paint without gloves and garden in the deep dirt. I am feminine, yet I am also a bit rugged in the things I will attempt with these hands. I have long piano fingers, like my mother and hands that each of my sons carry. So things show easily like scars, red spots, bruises. The scar I recieved from a glass that broke and implded into my hand. It sits right above the words…”gracefully enduring” with jasmine.

But this morning as the light hits my hands I see scars forgotten and moments I would like to forget. I see the joint broken from the abuse. The injury that has my pointer finger in an odd direction. Just slightly off kilter. The burns that are on the underside and the cuts which are scars white and translucent with finely defined edges. Scars that hurt at times because of broken bones and cuts and a disease which hurts my joints and makes them swell. I think they are oddly huge but they are not and unless I bring your attention to it. You may easily not notice it. Hands that sit politely in my lap because I was told I was not a lady. Hands that want to dial phone numbers and call the one I want to talk to to hear their voice. To know it will be well. Hands that struggle to write that note. Hands that turn blue when the temperature becomes too cold for this disease to handle. Hands that pull the blanket closer around me to chase out the cold and to release myself from the memory one more time.

I let the light move over me. It is healing. It gives strength and it lets me smile. I look at the lace curtains and the light dancing through them beckoning me to come play. I marvel at the sparkles and shades dancing on the wall and off the dark wood of the bed and wish in this moment I could hold the brush or pencil steady enough to paint what I see. I think I should get up because I should be doing something other than willing my spine to stop its dance of pain, something. But I lay here and let this soak into me and do not feel like a failure or incompetent for one more moment.

I pull my hands from under the covers. I look at them and think of sadness. I think of what this woman has endured and triumphed over in forty-nine years. I think of what I have done and what I still have left to do. And with these hands that have labored hard and are now becoming less useful to me in the manner I thought they were meant. I now lay them to rest and look again out the window to that light and realize something magical. My hands and what I was able to do may be changed and limited. Yet this voice is very active and very strong. And what my hands cannot do I will allow others to do. Yet this voice and the words to be spoken are my next adventure; and that I willingly give myself to. For it is life and it is something I intend to enjoy and cherish despite what has been done or will be done. It is by my definition I continue this course and do so with the light illuminating all those parts of me. Even the ones I think have lost their beauty..even those.


~ by HopeGlenn on January 25, 2012.

One Response to “Sunshine upon these hands…….”

  1. I am in awe of your thoughts and feelings and the ability that you have to openly express yourself into unabashed and graceful words.
    You have made me see you in a bright and different way.
    I have become more enamored and in love with your soul as I have taken you into my heart and soul.
    You have touched me in a brilliant way.
    Thank you *Mandy.
    Love *Jeannine


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