…or they should.
My son Rex has this thing that he does: He will unzip his onesie, say “belly” and then “hug-hug.” It didn’t take long for us to get what he was alluding to. He even would go as far as lifting up my shirt. He wanted a belly hug! I gladly complied with his request. Maybe he was born with that type of insight because we didn’t teach him that.
I believe I’ve said this before in a previous post that I have never understood the importance of touch more than I do now. Touch conveys many things, including (but not limited to): a sense of security, love, and trust. Rex knows intuitively, without a word, these things are communicated when I hug him (which happens a lot). There is so much more to touch that we don’t have the liberty or time to delve into right now, but I’m sure you have your own experiences with touch.
I had this discussion with one of my brothers, Marcus and he said, “Man, why can’t it be like that [belly hugs] all the time?”I instantly agreed, but I thought even further about it. Why can’t it be that way all of the time? I mean, really? Belly hugs are so enjoyable and full of love. I get so much joy out of belly hugs.
But there’s an elephant in the room.
It’s not the norm. I’d be looked at strangely if I even attempted to do such a thing to one of my friends, let alone in public.
Recently, I heard a leadership talk given by Dr. Myles Munroe. He said many wonderful things, but this stood out to me: “Society teaches you how to behave.” This is so true. Since I was born, I have been taught, conditioned and socialized how to think. We all have. This has proven to have both benefits and consequences. These set of “rules” shape how we see the world and most importantly what we think about ourselves.
I say all of this to say what if bare-skinned belly hugs were a part of our world’s social norms? How different would the world be? What would be the effects of that particular type of touch?
Since writing this, we have ramped up our belly hugs. It has gone from once or twice a week to just about once a day.
Well, this ends our brief time together. Love more deeply. think more critically, and invest more time into the ones you love most.
Until next time,
Love and Peace.