I used to be an intense hugger. Well, I still am, but I used to be with lots of people, now I am a lot more selective. Maybe time and the world has made me less of a hugger, but I remember as a very small child that I would hug with a fierceness and not let go. I am not sure what that was all about, but I can visually remember being a hardcore hugger. What happened? Did I learn that I had to be careful who I hugged? Did I not get hugs in return? I am not completely sure, but I know something shifted in my life and I became more aware and cautious about my hugging. Part of it saddens me. Why?
A hug is a wonderful thing. It can completely change a moment. You can be angry with your spouse, disagree, and they can encompass you with their entire body into a hug and it can make all the anger and frustration melt and ooze out of your body. A hug can essentially heal a moment.
A hug can comfort you. Have you ever had a time when you had no idea that something was bugging you and a friend or family member could tell that you need a hug? The moment you are embraced, you melt. You start with shedding a tear, and the comfort and safe arms around you turns you into a blubbering mess. It has happened to me with close friends, family members, and co-workers. A hug can release the most pent-up issues in life.
A hug can make you feel loved. In my marriage I am a hugger (well, we both are). Yes, I can share with you that of course I love the passion of a kiss, but a hug comforts, supports, and shares something deep. It reminds you that you matter. A hug can ground you and reinforce just how much you are loved.
Hug it out, release, and remember that you are loved. Right now. Today.
🙂 [the modern day hug!]
actually – i think it may be more programming
0-3 years: self-awareness / action reaction (hugs make smiles!)
3-7 years: exploitation of action reaction understanding (hugs hugs hugs!)
8-11 years: chemical changes / prepubescent / aware of one’s own body / beginning of the independent self that is in conflict with the dependent self (hugs when warranted – “love you dad!”)
12-16 years: boucoup chemical changes that form drives / puberty / hyper self-conscious… independent self continually beats up on dependent self (absolutely no hugs for family unless forced / weird interpretations of physical contact for potential mates / everyone misinterprets physical contact – everyone is infatuated)
17-21 years: puberty ramping down / developing understanding of drives and focusing drives / aware of preferences in mates / dating not just for the sake of dating (physical affection returns but maybe not hugs / the lean in / REAL hugs are for mates / non mates get the hip separated hug / handful of friendly misinterpretations and at least one infatuation)
22-25 years: now comfortable with physical self and drives (hugs for parents and friends come back but remain hip separated hugs / may deal with one misinterpretation of friendly contact
26 years on: life’s too short but friends and family are diminishing and personal independence / family take priority ergo chances to tell / show friends family shrink greatly even though we now recognize that we must show it whenever we can yet geographically we cannot.
Such a great breakout of the ages. I feel like I missed 12-26 with my family with my parents gone. Sort of like all those years I was almost hugless, or very careful and guarded on who I hugged. Love your title of “modern day hug.” Thank you for sharing 🙂