My hands were cold, his were warm. “Your fingers are just like mine,” he said looking at them, “Let me warm your hands.” He held my hands on his. This was our ritual: my hands were always colder, his were always warmer, his always held mine. “I wish I had slender, long fingers like my sis,” I said under my breath as I looked at my stubby fingers. He smiled.

“Were his fingers always thick?” the nurse asked again, whisking me from my memories. I held his hand, interlacing my fingers in his. “Yes, they were always chubby like mine, right dad?” No reply. They were swollen, they showed what I refused to see. My hands became warmer and I kept holding his hands in mine to keep the cold away. But in the end, no matter how I much tried, I failed to keep them warm.

In response to The Daily Post’s weekly writing challenge: “Digging for Roots.”


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