When I was a young girl, I used to watch my grandmother as she turned a single strand of yarn into ethereal works of art. She made doilies. As her fingers worked quickly forming magical mandalas, her voice spun stories to capture our attention. Her hands were like two puppet dancers, moving in rhythm then pausing to illustrate an aspect of the tales she told. When she was done, she invited us onto her lap. Her hands held ours, sometimes in silence, but volumes of information passed between them.
You are loved. You are valued. You are my world. And whatever might have been off, whatever might have been hurting, in one touch of her delicate hands was healed.
My grandmother, who I called Mommy Duff, was one of the first people I remember finding myself in. She was playful, creative, wise, loving, and rather wild. She didn’t roll like others. She danced to her own tune (and she really did love to dance). I remember thinking, even when I was very young, that I wanted to be like her. But I didn’t really look like her, so I used to pretend that I inherited her hands, that place where her womancrafts, her stories, and her energizing touch came to life.
I have been thinking a lot about my hands recently. They are my co-workers. In the studio, they lead my art adventures. They dance over the keys, bringing my thoughts out for all the world to witness. But there is one aspect of what my hands love to do that I have had placed on the upper shelf for several years, just out of reach. Over a decade ago, I became licensed as a massage therapist, probably some of the most valuable work my hands have created.
My first teacher was not part of the school. She was a woman who felt called to healing through her hands before there were licenses and regulations by the government. I took a reflexology class from her just before starting my formal education. She took me aside at the end of the class and held my hands in hers. I remember feeling that her hands got very warm and then I heard her speaking words over them. That evening when I left, I felt like I had been anointed, blessed. Ever since, I have considered that moment with her a gift. And ever since that night, I have felt my hands connected to my heart.
As I have been working towards doing more of what I love, my wish to include massage again has become stronger and stronger. So, for the last month, I have been working on making that happen. Yesterday, I picked up a key for the massage studio I am going to work out of and should be getting my massage chair back from the upholsterer next week.
Blending art, writing and massage together feels as if I am bringing together a formula for personal success. It feels like I am living from a very sacred place in my soul.
This last week when I glanced down at the tops of my hands in the sunlight, I noticed the fine lines that are beginning to take shape. They are some of the first hints of the coming of my wise woman years (besides the multiplying strands of grey that have graced my head for several decades). I play scared about them sometimes. Oh, no, look! Wrinkles. But in my heart, I am deeply grateful for them. They reflect that royal line of queens I have emerged out of. They are tiny map markings which record the path I have traveled and the promise of adventure that awaits me.
One of the first nights that I started bringing this creative biz to life, I drew a hand which eventually became the logo for that business, for Creativity Tribe. When I first looked at it, it was simply an interesting hand, but as I discover where my soul calls Creativity Tribe to grow, I know that hand is a talisman, leading me to my destiny, announcing what I value, and calling out to others to join their hands with mine.
For inspirational and opportunities to connect throughout the week, visit the Creativity Tribe Facebook page. I’ll keep the light on for you!