When you ask my husband and I who made the first move, you will get completely different answers from us. Imagine this scenario:
Two very awkward teenagers sat in a movie theatre on their very first date. No one said anything, so the girl asked the boy for a random high-5 in order to relieve some of the tension. He took this as his que and grabbed her hand and held it tightly for the duration of the movie. The next day she told him that she would only like to be friends with him.
She did however, realise her mistake a few weeks later and they’ve been dating ever since.
I remember that holding hands with my husband, used to give me butterflies. It’s something so simple but yet so intimate. After two years of marriage and five years of dating, I know his hands like I know my own. His pinkie doesn’t bend because of an old rugby injury and the knuckle on his ring finger is constantly swollen. I know that the pad of his thumb is soft, and that the lifeline of his left palm is longer than his right. I know this because we’ve been holding hands for so long that it’s almost become second nature. We sometimes hold hands in bed until we both fall asleep, which usually takes about 30 seconds when you’ve been up since 5am.
These days, our hands are holding other things. The back of a pram, a handbag, a phone or the baby. When we do get the opportunity to hold hands it’s usually short-lived and I usually don’t even notice.
A few weeks back however, William fell asleep on the way to church. We had just sat down when Jacques suddenly took my hand in his. I felt the familiar butterflies return from their slumber. My stomach turned, and I could feel my palms sweating against his. “How wonderful”, I thought. Something that seems so insignificantly small can mean something so significantly special. It reminded me of the fact that even though our life has changed dramatically over the past few years, we’ll always be those two awkward teenagers in the movie theatre. We started off holding hands and we’ll probably be doing so until both our hands are old and wrinkly. His hands will always be mine to hold.