Tuesday, December 23, 2014

A Mother's Hands .....


After my second adoption, I stopped referring to my uncle and his wife by those names and started calling them "dad" and "mom."  For the purposes of keeping this blog as uncomplicated as possible, I'll continue with the original terms.

A while back, I accompanied a friend and her mother as they browsed the stacks in a used book store.  At one point, my friend knelt down to look at the title on the bottom shelf and, as she did so, her mother reached out her hand to gently touch the top of my friend's head.  It was a sweet, loving, totally un-selfconscious gesture and, seeing it, I felt a deep pang of regret.

The stereotypical view of a mother's hands -- gentle, kind and caring.

In all the time I lived with my uncle and his wife, I can remember only two instances of obvious kindness:  the morning of my first day at my school, when she stood with me at the bus stop; and about three years later when I was home sick and she, without me asking, fixed me something special for lunch.

Two kindnesses in somewhat more than 2,200 days of living in that house.

On the other hand (no pun intended), the cruelties were numerous.