Sunday, March 7, 2010


Dear Riley,

Handedness is a big deal in our family. Most everyone is right-handed. But, there are three people I can think of who are left-handed: Your great-uncle Scott, your second cousin Brennan, and your Momma. When I was growing up not many people were left-handed. Nowadays it seems like there are more and more left-handed people around. Years ago if someone was born and tended to use their left hand more than the right, adults would force them to use their right hand. There were many negative connotations to using your left hand back then. Some cultures thought the left hand represented the devil and other evil related things.

Today, being left-handed doesn't come with the same social stigmas. However, there are still difficulties in being left-handed even today. Growing up left-handed gave me this special insight. When I use a pen to right on a piece of paper I drag the ink across the paper. Ink also gets on the inside of my hand and only comes off with soap. I can't see what I am writing without leaning a certain way. Some left-handed people actually curve their hand around when they are writing to be able to see what they are writing. I don't do this so that might explain the slant of my letters when I write. Scissors were also a big problem growing up. I would have to turn the scissors upside down and backward to get them to work properly, and even then they weren't comfortable in my hand and certainly didn't cut normally. I played basketball a lot growing up and every coach tried to teach me a different way to shoot. Of course all my coaches were right-handed so they had a lot of business teaching a left-handed girl how to shoot. My biggest problem was using a ruler. If I wanted to use a ruler like everyone else all the numbers were on the wrong side. This is still a problem today since all rulers are made for right-handed people.  My Grandmom bought me a left-handed ruler one time and I loved it! I don't know what happened to this ruler but I know I would use it over a different ruler if I had it today. My ruler was similar to this one:
My ruler also said "Lefties will Rule the World." Cute huh? Anyway, being left-hand also means learning to use everyday items that are made for a right-handed person: a camera, a gun (not really an everyday item and I hope you never use one!), a guitar, a can opener, a computer mouse, a vegetable peeler, pencil sharpeners, the list goes on and on. Every day I encounter an object that I have to use backward or that feels uncomfortable in my hands. 
I say all this to say,

it looks like you are left-handed! I am probably happier about this fact than I was when you slept through the night the first time or took your first steps. I am so happy! I love being left-handed. People always notice and I enjoy the jokes people like to tell about being left-handed. 

One of your favorite activities is to write. You are so happy with a pen and a piece of paper in your hands, or left hand I should say. Last week, your Daddy tried to put the marker in your right hand and you immediately switched it back to your left hand. See, you are a smart girl! And, come to find out many of the brightest scientists, politicians, and artists are/were left-handed: Jimi Hendrix, Kurt Cobain, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush, Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Leonardo da Vinci, Buzz Aldrin, Michelangelo, and Albert Einstein. What a great group of humans to be associated with! 

If you continue to use your left hand throughout your life, be proud! I know I am! 

Love you sweet girl!


1 comment:

  1. how funny! My husband is a lefty (so is my mom) deep down I know they are pulling for Sawyer to be too!