>Hug it out


So my friend, Ulysses, posted this video on Facebook today. I’m familiar with the concept of the Free Hug movement and I’ve seen the “Free Hug” T-shirts many times as well as another video of people giving them (nod to Jim) but I think this is the first time I saw this video.

I don’t know if it was the song, the version of the song, the purity of the act or the combination of all three, but watching the video of people hugging strangers made me emotional and I both smiled and teared up as I watched it. I imagine it must be such a powerful thing to be walking down the street feeling like the world is shitting on you or being worried or afraid about something or feeling totally alone and suddenly have a stranger offer you a hug.

I have always liked hugging.

Among my friends, hugging is a staple and conveys so many messages. We hug to say hello, good-bye, when we have exciting news to share, when we bowl well, when we make each other laugh, when we see each other cry, when we say thank you or when we just want to give each other a simple reminder that we care about each other. We hug new people we are meeting for the first time to welcome them and we hug to reassure each other we’re there and things will get better. And sometimes, we hug because we just don’t know what else to say or do.

Watching this made me want to hug everyone I know, care about and love. It made me want to go out and hug strangers.

And it even made me want to hug people that are no longer in my life.

That last one got me to wondering just how powerful a hug is and how much ill will it could really cure if we sincerely used it for such a purpose. I don’t mean a cold, emotionless hug that we give sometimes when we don’t want to but it’s too awkward not to so we just do it and get it over with. I mean a genuine, care filled, honest and sincere hug; a strong embrace, burying our head into one another’s shoulders, sharing an intimate moment of true, unadulterated affection. Could and would it heal all wounds? Would it reignite positive feelings, reconnect people and re-attach heart strings? If we really gave ourselves over to the hug and shared it with someone we felt we had lost forever, would it work its magic and do what words, explanations, arguments and apologies never could? Just how healing is the power of a hug and are you willing to find out?

This is what I wondered to myself as my mind and emotions started to wander all over the place. If I was offered a hug by someone who hurt or angered me to a degree that resulted in the end of our friendship, would I accept it? If I knew I could offer a hug to someone I had hurt or angered to a degree that resulted in the end of our friendship, would I offer it? I’d like to think I would on both counts.

I wonder if I’ll ever have a chance to find out.

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3 Responses to >Hug it out

  1. Kyle says:

    >Beautiful.:)Blog brother, I'm reaching out to give you a big, big hug.

  2. Raybeard says:

    >Yes, the sight of strangers exchanging hugs is certainly a joyous one and it made me smile too, but frankly (and maybe this says a lot about me) if I saw someone offering to hug all and sundry where I live, my first thought would probably be "Is this a ploy to pick my wallet?" And seeing grown men (and, yes, women) in physical contact with children whom they don't know these days seems a bit creepy. Guess it's my fault for reading more into the gesture than there is. Now is that sad or what? (But a lotta warm hugs to YOU, Wonderboy!)

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