Before my Dad died, I wasn’t much of a hugger or outwardly affectionate. This went back to my teens, but that didn’t mean I didn’t care, or love someone, I just found it difficult to show it.
After 1996 though, whenever I saw my Mum, I always hugged her and told her I loved her.
My in-laws were never huggy people, and I hugged FIL once, but he was as responsive as an ironing board, I think because he didn’t expect it, neither was he used to it. I cannot remember ever hugging MIL.
I’ve never lived on my own so have always had someone with whom to have conversation, confide in, or hug me when I needed comfort. I wrote a post years ago about loneliness which covered living alone, and you can read it here.
I woke up this morning thinking about physical contact, or in many cases now, the lack of it. Christmas especially is a time for families to get together, sometimes the ONLY time in the year they can. For millions, recent events have brought their plans crashing down round their heads. Uncertainty, annoyance, anger, frustration and taking the risk all play a part, and Christmas is not going to be the festive season it should be.
We are aware of several people who have lost their spouses this year. Most have family that live locally, but some do not and a journey of three or four hours each way is impractical for one day. Thus, those living alone feel even more isolated, and although technology gives us skype, zoom, and other means of face to face communication, it is not the same as leaning on someone’s shoulder, holding a hand, having a hug, or kissing a weathered cheek.
Social distancing, no mixing of households and no hugging granny is being recommended.
So even if some families can unite for the holidays, there are restrictions.
I guess then in some ways, Hubby and I are lucky not to have family to visit, and there is certainly none that would visit us.
We are a bubble of three, ourselves and our neighbour, and although in contact daily, we are not in each other’s houses all the time.
It is a difficult time for everyone, and I am just grateful that I have Hubby to share my life, someone who can hold my hand, and hug me, or I him, when the touch of another human being is so important.