HANDS- A Message of Inspiration
and Support for Caregivers
This morning I came across a quote from St. Teresa of Avila that I think offers tremendous support for caregivers. She said, “Christ has no body now on earth but yours. No hands but yours, no feet but yours. Yours are the eyes through which Christ’s compassion looks out on the world. Yours are the feet with which he is to go about doing good. And yours are the hands with which he is to bless us now.”
I love this quote, and it made me think of a Christmas gift I received many years ago from my parents. In July my mother started sending hints about it. In one letter she wrote, “Thought you might like a few hints about your Christmas present. There is no way money can buy it, and it is almost irreplaceable.”
In another letter she said, “One more hint about your Christmas present. You might like to know that it won’t fade, shrink or go out of style.” A few days before Christmas she wrote, “I am so eager to hear your reaction to your Christmas present. I’ve been giving you hints for months, and you still haven’t guessed what it is. Only a few days left before you can open it.”
On January 7, she wrote, “I’m so glad you like the plaster cast of our hands. Had we known we were going to have it done, we might have filed off the chipped fingernails, but the guy was in the grocery store parking lot and he was just there for one afternoon. He had us hold hands and then dip them in the bucket. I think they turned out pretty good. One of these days when we’re both gone, you can look at that little statue and remember the hands that raised you.”
When I look at that cast of my parents hands now, I’m overwhelmed and humbled with memories. If you are a caregiver, I hope you’ll take a moment to look at your hands and appreciate that they are the tools of your heart, and regardless of the shape, size or condition, they are exquisite and precious to the people in your care.