"Mama always said you could always tell a lady by her hands." Scarlett O'Hara's middle sister said this, or something to that effect while she was picking cotton after the South surrendered and the Civil War ended.
It is unlikely that Mrs. O'Hara, would have ever thought me a lady by observing my hands.
I always wanted long thin fingers, perfectly for playing piano or modeling small kitchen appliances but instead my stubby fingers are more Shrek-like, short, fat little sausages. I wanted medium length strong finger nails. Nails I could always keep in a squared french manicure. I thought they'd make my fingers look longer. Alas, my nails are so thin you can bend them in half. They grow unevenly, and a couple of them sort bow and curve. If they were strong I'd have double, double toil and trouble nails curving all over the place.
No my hands aren't very ladylike by any standard. They are even beginning to show age. You know when you bunch of the loose skin and it doesn't snap right back, but sort of yawns and slowly makes it's way to the rest of your hand?
My hands have been covered in paint for the last year at my workbench. But before that they were covered with lots of other things. Flour, dirt, finger paints, clay, chalk, and tears.
My hands are not delicate. They held my husband and told him everything would be alright before dawn one morning as he boarded a plane to head to Iraq. They comforted babies, and fixed toys. They sew, cook and build furniture. They fold in prayer and remind me to be still before my God.
The hands of a housewife are not very lady-like at all but they hold coffee and tea cups as gently as the next. No, housewife hands do it all. All that needs doing.
It seems like it was just yesterday these hands reached down to scoop up toddlers. Now they hand over car keys.
Somedays, ms doesn't allow my hands to maneuver at my workbench my tools but they will still turn the page of a book to read to my son.
Planning your home and planning your life, are pretty similar endeavors. You may want one thing, but you gotta work with you got. What makes life extraordinary is being content, and feeling blessed with what you've been given.