The world is divided into two groups. There are huggers and then there are non-huggers. As Americans we tend to maintain our personal space and hug accordingly. We don’t embrace with our heart, we just lightly pat with courtesy and maintain that invisible line of separation. Why are we so afraid to let others invade our personal space? Why do we keep at bay? Why don’t we want to let them in? What are we so afraid of?
Easy and obvious. Humans don’t like pain. Because no one likes that pang of an empty hollow broken heart. The metallic echoes that creep up when you’re alone in your bed or on long drives late at night. They’re awful. Your chest tightens and where your heart should be there is a gaping hole and it feels empty and every breath you take frosts that hole ice cold. I liken it physiologically to a panic attack. Where nothing in the world seems right and it feels like the world is closing in on you. You feel like you’re swimming for air. Gasping. Bigger and deeper breaths but no oxygen is getting in. You swim faster only to lose the last of your breaths wastefully and succumb to the inevitable suffocation.
Okay, so maybe that was a bit dramatic. But, I swear sometime it just feels like that.
Most of us, if we’ve gone and put ourselves on the line for anything, have probably had our hearts broken or hurt at least once in our lives. And that Pavlovian instinct we learn to associate with letting someone in and and having your heart torn out and stomped on is where we owe credit to wall-building. We build and we keep out anyone who might want to get at the holy grail only to destroy it whether intentionally or unintentionally. We keep people at a distance for the sole purpose of “protecting ourselves.” We know that this isn’t the right thing to do. Blah, blah, blah. But, we do it anyways. Because we’re self-preserving morons who rather not feel anything at all than feel everything because it might also mean pain.
Lesson of the day: Life’s too short. It really is. And you want to waste it building a freaking moat around your steel tower. For what? So you can die alone in that tower?
Hug someone today…and like you mean it.
There are exceptions to everything. Real, genuine huggers are out there. They exist. Like my friend Jess, who gives the greatest most emphatic hugs. She hugs like she means it. And you actually feel uplifted and your day is brightened by an act as simple as a meaningful hug. Jess hugs like she’s giving a part of herself to you.
The human touch is a powerful thing. We go through so much of our childhood naturally touching and being touched. But, as we get older we stand an arm’s length from any given person at any given time.
My favorite hugs are the ones that last a second longer that make you feel like you don’t ever want to let go.
I used to be a non-hugger but I’m slowly breaking down the wall.