I recently had a realization: when someone says, “I know ____ like the back of my hand,” that statement doesn’t really apply to me. I don’t know the back of my hand. I know there’s a light brown freckle on either my left or my right palm, but that’s about it. (And, I only know that because I thought I should memorize my hand a little more. In light of the above adage.)
Interestingly enough, I probably know my sister’s hand, my boyfriend’s hand or my best friend’s hand three thousand times better than I know my own. I like to hold hands. I like to interlock fingers at the most inopportune moments, seeking comfort, worth and companionship constantly. I find such security in holding hands, in touch itself.
It’s such an easy way to display true affection and intimacy, and in a lot of senses, seems like a more apt expression than referring to one’s own hand as the thing that one knows well. I seek to spend much more time exploring someone else than fascinating myself with my own bodily idiosyncracies and differences. An imperfection on my own hand is just that– an imperfection. However, an imperfection on Haley is a quality that makes her truly beautiful. I can guarantee my sister feels the same way I do.
It’s a story. A scar from the time I scratched her, when we were still getting in physical fights. A burn from the trip we tried cooking with grease. Knowing someone else’s hand seems so much better, so much more like knowing, than knowing your own hand. It’s their story and one’s own, intertwined rather than a singular reflection.