hidden beauty

Many years ago (during my summers home from university), I worked as a Health Care Aide in a nursing home.
I loved it.
I loved the ability to help people in a real and tangible way.
I loved how simply stopping and crouching down to speak with a resident in a wheelchair, seemed to transform their vacant stares into bright expressions.

So many beautiful elderly ladies.
They reminded me of my Grosmama.
Soft white hair braided and pinned into a "schups" (bun).
Soft smiles.
Wisdom behind the tired, sparkly eyes.
Assisting, guiding, transfering, feeding, bathing, dressing, lifting, comforting, hugging, caring.

Carefully i would help frail arms through dress sleeves...
Gently, with respect for the person before me,
I would button-up clothing, and comb thinning hair.

I couldn't help but notice...
The arms and faces of these women,
how they revealed evidence of aging, stress, and thousands of sunny days.
Working out on the field, exposed to the heat.
Wrinkles, sun-spots, calloused hands.

Yet underneath the fabric....on the shoulders and back,
appeared the skin of a much younger woman.
Such a contrast.
Completely protected over the years from the earth's elements,
A beauty that was covered and hidden.
wrinkle free.
Unblemished and ageless.

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