June 1, 2013
The Touch of a Woman – by Rita Tanos
I had forgotten what it felt like to be living authentically in my own feminine power. Those feelings of lightness, sweetness, and grace seemed like a past history of another life that I was no longer a part of. So many years of challenge, struggle and loss began to show their wear and tear, especially on my hands and the tips of my fingers.
Once beautiful and elegant, with perfectly manicured nails, my hands now looked like a gardener’s hand, mowing lawns, seeding vines, and doing hard labor. What was I cultivating? I had not noticed them for a long time. Until today. They were clean, but the texture of my skin had changed, as did my perfectly feminine manicure. I had to take a closer look to see what they wanted to tell me. Surely there must be a message here, on the tips of my fingers and palms of my hands.
I noticed that the years of tapping on my computer keyboard, writing volumes of sorrow and grief in my book were somehow indented on the tips of my fingers. All those emotions that flowed up and out of me these last years were ingrained like a spider’s web, circling the imprints of my thoughts onto my body. Had my fingerprints changed? Did the swirls of my DNA look any different today than they did when I felt strong, feminine and beautiful? I wondered…
Did my daughter’s death vibrate so violently throughout my body and soul that I now had a new imprint? Where was the tenderness? Where was the sweetness? Where was that graceful, elegant woman I knew myself to be just a couple years ago? Where did my humor go? Where did my affections go? Where did my passion go? Where did ‘I’ go? I wondered…
Feeling the depths of this hard labor camp called grief and loss, I finally found myself sowing new seeds of hopes and dreams more than a year later. Slowly, very slowly, they came…one at a time. I wanted to feel love again. I wanted to feel life again. I wanted to feel beautiful again. I wanted to feel ‘me’ again! But most of all, I wanted to feel love again. Love for myself and love for all sentient beings. And I longed to share my life with a loving partner.
This path of pain and sorrow that left me feeling weak, fragile, and uncertain was beginning to morph into tenderness and sweetness once again. While I ached for closeness with my self and others, I wanted to feel my full, open heart. Where was it? Surely somewhere very close by, inside my beautiful self.
So began the journey of my heart into a deeper, more spacious, more luxurious place. As I dug through so many layers of these locked chambers inside my heart, I realized that I did not even know they existed. Locked so tightly in place, and frozen with rusted ancient wounds, they were invisible to my conscious awareness. How could I possibly exist like this?
Throughout the excavation of this dark night, I trusted that the deep longing of my soul held the rusty keys to this secret hiding place where I would find my inner radiance once again. . . where I would feel love again. As my journey took me to the bottom of the earth, digging through hardened layers of dark, black gravel, I began to find this tunnel of light.
I knew all I had to do was Trust. One step at a time, one day at at time, one moment at a time, one breath at a time, every day. I had to Trust that no matter what was happening in my life, and no matter how it looked right now, something amazing, huge, and incredible was going to come out of this. Something way bigger than me!
My hardened, grieving heart became soft once again, like a whisper in the breeze when I heard my daughter’s voice speaking to me in the wind. Like grist for the mill that was as tough as nails, I suddenly melted like smooth snow and transformed those rough, hardened edges into fluid, flowing water. Like Grace, the downpour of streaming tears broke every rusted chain inside my heart, one by one, link by link.
In deep gratitude, I kneeled and kissed the earth. As I rose up, for the first time in years, I stood tall and proud and felt the power and the Presence of this magnificent Woman inside of me. With my gardener’s hands across my heart, I could also see the hands of a beautiful woman. . .Loving. Kind. Compassionate. Gentle. Soft. Sweet. Tender. Warm. Feminine. Powerful. I felt the touch of a Woman’s hand, as I held my own hand with Loving Kindness, Gratitude and Appreciation.
The touch of a woman’s hand has the power to heal and change lives. Even our own lives!