I can look at my hands and see my mother. Hers are often arthritic and swollen, knobbly and housework roughened. However, as I bathe my young son in the bathtub, I can perfectly picture my mother doing the same thing to her son 50 years ago. My hands become hers; my love, the same she felt.
I can see the children she tended and the dishes she washed.
The sheets she folded and the scraped knees she bandaged.
The items she slings across the register as a nighttime cashier and the grandchildren she cuddles in close for hugs.
She was born in 1939. Her life hasn't always been an easy one. She's seen several wars and lived on more than one continent. She's rasied four children. She's had to learn when to hold on and when to let go.
She isn't traditionally or classically pretty as society would define. I would offer a picture but she hates to have hers taken even more than I do. But she is my mom and she is beautiful to me as mothers are to their children.
Her hair may be gray and her body saggier than it used to be, yet she still wrestles in the floor with her grandchildren and is quick to spout off a sassy one liner.
I see beauty and grace in every one of the knobs and lines on her hands. I see her.