Is the handshake gone forever?

Written by on October 5, 2020

I cannot remember the last time I shook someone’s hand. Instead, I have seen, and tried to emulate (unsuccessfully I might add) some very creative elbow and foot taps. I am very diligent in my social distancing routine!

As time passes, however, a comical elbow and foot tap is making way for the start of something far more concerning – touch phobia. 

A handshake is far more than just a polite greeting; it is a key foundation of our relationships. Something deeply human, our ability to touch one another, has literally been ripped out of our interactions. 

Our hands work, they build, they greet, they congratulate, they comfort, they wipe away tears, they commiserate, they cook, they bake, they feed, they clean, they solve, they fix, they cure, they break (mostly by accident). 

Through our hands we touch, we serve, we comfort, we create, we communicate, we connect. They reflect our lives. 

I read a poem, some lines I share here. “Stop and think for a moment about the hands you have, how they served you well throughout your years. These hands, though wrinkled, shriveled, and weak, have been the tools I have used all my life to reach out and grab and embrace life…. These hands are the mark of where I’ve been…”

As I wash my hands for the umpteenth time today, it dawns on me that I will never look at my hands quite the same way again.