Hands say a lot about us by ProQuest


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                                          Hands say a lot about us
                                          “Nobody ever touches me any more.       lower back take a beating. A mas-       hands with both of their hands dur-
                                          Oh sure, they bathe me and change       sage therapist I went to for a couple   ing a time of grief.
                                          me, but no real touching any more.”     of years had healing hands. I could       Let’s give ourselves a hand for the
                                          The power of touch, the importance      feel their warmth before she even       great and important work we do
HAVING MY SAY                             of hands in what we do.                 touched my skin.                        through people whose hands reflect
William L. “Larry” Minnix, Jr.
                                            My late Uncle Aubrey, who had a          The hands of healing are essential   their character, and compassion.
President and CEO, American Association
of Homes and Services for the Aging       wrecker service, garage and cow         to the work we do with the elderly      Give a gift of a pat on the back or a
                                          pastures, had great hands. So did my    and disabled. Notice the hands of       10-minute hand massage for every
                                          late Uncle Clarence, who worked         your nursing or therapy staff some-     employee or resident.
My late mother, who died almost four      the night shift at the cotton mill.     time. They look warm. And they are        Hands. Working hands.
years ago of cancer, was a colorful       Both had calloused, hardened            soft and gentle. Healing hands are        No, I didn’t put gloves on my
character. She was a modern woman         hands—with grease under the             the most important tool in our          mother in her casket. I was proud of
before it was a popular thing to be.      fingernails and embedded deep in        repertoire of caring.                   those hands. They did a lot for me—
My daddy was a traveling salesman         the creases of the skin on those big,      And think of the power of a pat on   and for countless others.
for many years, and both parents          well-worked leathery hands.             the back when we need a boost or a
worked and had a kid to raise.              I remember Jesse Barlow, Bob          thank you. Remember what it feels         Editor’s note: Minnix recently sent
                                          Young, Dalton Hollinger and Lewis       like to have someone embrace your       this essay to association members.

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                                          Willis, all “maintenance men” (no
     “Healing hands                       gender slight intended)
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