Mama’s Hands

May 11, 2013

in BLOGS,Cancer,Energy,General

august-october 14 06 189

Mama’s hands are such a precious gift.  A gift filled with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control, and humility.  All who have experienced the touch of Mama’s hands must know her hands have truly been used to fulfill God’s purpose in her life.

Mama’s hands are strong and busy.  They knead and shape the dough for bread, rolls, biscuits, cookies, and pies.  Mama’s hands seem to know how to prepare food for just a few or a huge crowd of people. 

Mama’s hands have cared for vegetable gardens from preparing the soil, sowing the seeds, weeding, harvesting, canning, freezing, and cooking. 

Mama’s hands have milked cows, separated or skimmed the cream, churned the butter, made cottage cheese, peeled and mashed potatoes, sorted and cooked pinto beans, baked cakes, heated water, washed and dried dishes. 

Many years Mama’s hands gathered or chopped kindling and put wood or coal in her cook stove in order to regulate the heat just right for whatever she was preparing. 

Mama’s hands have cared for baby chicks, gathered eggs, fought the roosters fearlessly, skinned, and butchered them for delicious fried chicken dinners. 

Monday was always the day Mama’s hands heated the water, filled the tubs, and started the gasoline wringer washing machine for wash day.  The clothes, bedding, and towels were sorted piece by piece, put through the washer, wringer, rinsed, put  back through the wringer, collars starched from the cooked starch, hung on the clothes line (in the heat of summer or freezing of winter), brought in, folded to put away, or sprinkled for ironing the next day.  Mama’s hands have never been able to tolerate wrinkled clothing.  How many hot fires have Mama’s hands kept going (even in the summer heat) to keep the heavy irons hot enough to press the wrinkles, iron the starched shirts, and neatly crease the Levi’s?

Mama’s hands have grown to be shaky at times, yet at eighty-six years they are still steady enough to sew stitches tiny and straight.  How many quilts have Mama’s hands made?  All the way from heirloom quilts to huge denim quilts with embroidered brands of family and friends. 

How many western shirts have Mama’s hands sewn?  How many pearl snaps have Mama’s hands gently hammered in place?  How many jeans have Mama’s hands mended and pressed? 

I do not remember having many store bought dresses during my growing up years.  Buttons were always removed from worn out garments and put in the button box to be chosen for another garment at a later time.

We were all very careful to not use Mama’s 4H sewing scissors.  They were only to be used for cutting cloth and thread.  Mama’s thimble was also intriguing to me as a child.  It was a tool used to assist her strong fingers in pushing those tiny needles through heavy denim or fine cotton.  She used it expertly, like a pro!

How many cuts and bruises have Mama’s hands lovingly tended?  How many tears have they caringly wiped away?  Mama’s hands kept me and my brothers free of colds in the winters.  We stood by the wood stove as she rubbed white liniment on our bare backs with her hard working hands that she seriously referred to as “corncob hands.” 

Mama’s hands received a weekly manicure as she filed and shaped her short fingernails on the long drive to church on Sunday mornings.

The wedding ring on her ring finger symbolizes the endless love that she holds for Daddy, truly her lifetime mate.  Mama’s hands cared for just about Daddy’s every need.  They gripped the car steering wheel with anxiety on several emergency trips to the hospital.  They opened and closed barbed wire gates as she helped tend chores on the ranch.  They held the reins of horses she rode to round up the cattle at gathering times.  They massaged sore muscles at the end of a long day.  They swept, scrubbed, and dusted as she kept her house in order for family, friends, and even strangers.  There was always plenty of food and room for Mama’s hands to set more plates around her kitchen table whether it was breakfast, dinner, or supper. MamaHorseback 50th Anniversary

Mama’s hands are rich.  They are rich from hard work.  They are rich from the love they share with others.  I cannot even begin to count the number of lives and hearts Mama’s hands have touched throughout her lifetime.  Mama’s hands are rich from the Word of God they hold so close to her heart.  Mama lives her life through her hands.

Thank you, Mama, for the richness your hands have given to me.

                                                                                Your loving daughter, Pat

                                                                                Written October 2006

Dec10thruOct12 021 My Mama and me, October 2012 on her 92nd birthday. She is still such a special, spunky lady despite the fact that she was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer in January of 2012. We are so thankful that she is not experiencing any pain or discomfort from the cancer. You can read about her cancer journey here.

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{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Beverley Golden May 10, 2014 at 12:48 pm

What a wonderful and vivid tribute to your dear mother, Pat.  I love the "mama's hands" theme and can imagine your mother and how engaged she was in life!  My mother was a fantastic knitter and crocheter, learned at the park when she was a young girl, however, at 98 now, she finds that her hands just won't work like they used to and she misses making hand-made gifts like she used to.  Thanks for letting me know about this piece and I appreciate your comment on my tribute to my mom as well:  http://huff.to/RysuRm.  It's always nice to share positive stories about our mothers! 

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2 Pat Moon May 11, 2014 at 6:07 pm

Yes, Beverley, it is nice to be able to share positive stories about our mothers as well as other positive stories. There is often so much negative out there in print, it is just nice to be able to read something pleasing and fullfilling.

Thanks for sharing your Mother’s story. It is amazing.

Peace to you.

Pat

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3 Lorii Abela May 22, 2013 at 8:24 am

What a moving message for your mom. A tear-jerking article indeed. The words were well felt. Thank you so much for sharing.

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4 Pat Moon May 22, 2013 at 9:32 pm

Lorii, so happy you were able to read my article. I loved sharing a bit of my Mom with you.

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5 Catherine Doucette May 20, 2013 at 11:35 am

My mom rocks too! Can't imagine life without her.

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6 Pat Moon May 20, 2013 at 9:45 pm

Catherine, its great to have a rocking mom!

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7 Robin Strohmaier May 19, 2013 at 8:03 pm

What a wonderful tribute to your mom, Pat! It made me miss my mom even more… Beautiful picture of the two of you. You are blessed. Thank you for sharing.

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8 Pat Moon May 20, 2013 at 10:35 am

Robin, thank you for your kind words. I’m sure you have wonderful memories of your Mom that you could share.

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9 Norma Doiron @Explode Your Business ONLINE! May 19, 2013 at 3:26 pm

That picture of you and your Mom is so precious. A lovely tribute… Thanks for sharing!

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10 Pat Moon May 19, 2013 at 4:20 pm

Thank you, Norma.

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11 Moira Hutchison May 17, 2013 at 2:27 pm

Pat – what a lovely tribute to your Mom… she sounds like an amazing woman!

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12 Pat Moon May 17, 2013 at 7:18 pm

Yes, Moira, my Mom is an amazing woman in so many ways.

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13 Babara Becker May 16, 2013 at 3:10 pm

A lovely tribute to your mother. I can feel the love coming from the words you wrote, Pat. Thank you for sharing.

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14 Pat Moon May 16, 2013 at 3:45 pm

Babara, loved sharing!

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15 Daniele Holmberg May 15, 2013 at 12:25 pm

I love it ! Such a beautiful post! It made me tear up! Great picture as well:) Very nice memories! <3

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16 Pat Moon May 15, 2013 at 3:22 pm

Daniele, thank you for your very nice comment. I felt a lot of emotion when I wrote that.

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17 Martha Giffen May 14, 2013 at 7:00 am

I love my Mother's hands! I even put a picture of her beautiful hands on FB to honor her on Mother's Day! There is such sweet love in the hands of our mothers. And, love the reference to the "button box"! We had one too.  I had forgotten 🙂

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18 Pat Moon May 14, 2013 at 9:58 am

Martha, there is so much in our mother’s hands.. so many memories like the button box. Last fall when I was visiting her and helping her with a sewing project I noticed her ‘pin box.’ It is one she had used for as long as I can remember but I didn’t know the story behind it until she told me last fall. I’ll have to write a story about it sometime.. it is interesting.

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19 Sharon O'Day May 13, 2013 at 11:15 pm

What a lovely way to frame a tribute to your Mother, Pat.  Over time, just through your writings, we've come to feel we know her in our own way … and you just rounded out more of the picture.  Wish her a belated Mother's Day from us all!

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20 Pat Moon May 14, 2013 at 9:53 am

Thank you, Sharon. I will relay your message to her.

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21 Meryl Hershey Beck May 13, 2013 at 9:23 pm

Wonderful post Pat, your mother sounds like she made some impression on you. Thanks you for sharing. 

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22 Pat Moon May 14, 2013 at 9:52 am

Meryl, yes every day I have my mother, I appreciate her more.. she means a lot to me.

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23 Tom Holmberg May 13, 2013 at 4:41 pm

This is a great post Pat, thanks for sharing your memories of your Mother

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24 Pat Moon May 13, 2013 at 5:48 pm

Tom, I love my Mother so truly enjoy enjoy sharing my memories of her. She was a hard working lady so it just goes to show you that hard work never hurt anyone;-)

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25 Shari May 13, 2013 at 3:33 pm

Very, very sweet. You are so fortunate to still have your mother in your life. Blessings on her and you.

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26 Pat Moon May 13, 2013 at 5:46 pm

Shari, yes, I am very fortunate to still have my mother so I took the opportunity to share this for mother’s day.

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27 Marilyn May 13, 2013 at 1:59 pm

What a great mother's day letter. Thank you for sharing.

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28 Pat Moon May 13, 2013 at 5:45 pm

Marilyn, Thank you for reading my mother’s day letter and commenting. Much appreciated.

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29 Alexandra McAllister May 13, 2013 at 1:26 pm

Oh, what a beautiful post, Pat. Thank you so much for sharing. I love the pic of you and your Mom. God bless.

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30 Pat Moon May 13, 2013 at 5:44 pm

Alexandra, thanks for your kind words. I just wanted to pay tribute to my Mom for Mother’s Day.

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