The other day I was sitting outside when I saw a mother grab her child’s hand to walk across the street. For some reason it got me thinking about hand holding and the symbolism it embraces in each stage of life.
As we grow old we are faced with different milestones and through each milestone we surround ourselves with loved ones. During a time of celebration or a time of sorrow we look to the individuals in our lives to be there for us, but how? Often times it is through kind words, through gifts, but almost always it is simply by just being there.
To let someone know we are “there” it is with the modest gesture of a hand hold. When you are born your parents hold your fingers to feel the warmth and the life inside their newborn child. In your first few weeks of life they are excited by the small accomplishments you achieve, like the squeezing of their hands–it lets them know you feel their presence and love.
When we are young we hold our caretaker’s hand to protect us and guide us. It ensures that we stay close to them, out of harms way, and it leads us to where we need to be.
As you venture into life on your own as an individual, holding someone’s hand is a sign of love and compassion. You hold your significant other’s hand to pull them closer, to show them off to the world, and to secure them. Once you find your soul mate you then hold their hand at the alter to vow eternal love now and forever.
As you become a parent the roles switch and you are now the hand holder, protecting your family and guiding them along the right path.
And at the end of our life it is the gesture that we partake in when our loved ones say goodbye as we take our last breathes.
As we run through time we never really think much about this simple gesture, but when you really take the time to analyze the symbolism behind it, it clutches so much meaning in every aspect of life. So, tonight hold someone’s hand and let them know you are there.