My family made a decision to social distance to keep each other safe. So, no one is hugging…it’s now been 9 months as I’m writing this. I made that decision when I thought this thing was going to be over in a few weeks. But the reason for the decision has not yet changed – just the duration. And what has made it more difficult is, I come from a very loving and huggy family.
Anyone who knows me knows I am totally a touchy-feely person. While I have a regular day job, I’ve also been a holistic health practitioner for 40 years. I am a creature fueled and nourished by touch – and I provide that nourishment back to others. Client, friends and family are used to approaching me with their physical ailments and expecting a healing touch solution. So, for me this feels totally wrong. I’m used to hugging family, friends, and sometimes even new acquaintances. I really miss hugging and I know I’m not alone.
Our Covid “bubble” or “Circle of Trust” has shrunk to, in some cases, just ourselves which can be very lonely. We are not able to be our natural, open, trusting, tactile human selves. In a lot of ways our current life feels weird and unnatural – because it is. Humans crave physical connection. It is our way of showing support, and comfort, and love. To me there is nothing better than getting and giving a great big hug.
I have to admit that I have had a few somewhat unintentional, hold your breath, spontaneous masked hug slips with family members and friends. We just hugged as an automatic response to seeing each other, without really thinking, and then quickly stepped apart. It felt comforting, needed, and at the same time dangerous and illegal – breaking the rules we had set up for ourselves.
I have talked to multiple people who have adopted pets during this pandemic – just to have someone to love and hug on – and be loved and hugged on. What I’m suggesting though is self-comforting by giving yourself a big hug. I know it is a crazy idea! It is not the same as the energetic exchange of two people, but it is an energetic connection with yourself. Ok, self-hugs absolutely can’t replace the real thing – but they do feel surprisingly soothing.
Don’t be shy. No one is watching. Just try it. Close your eyes and allow yourself to be Present. Let your body gently rock. Now, give yourself a big, loving, rub-your-arms comforting hug. And Breathe….