Touch is by far one of the most important senses. Never seeing a person again, or hearing their voice, even smelling their cologne, or their signature dish again, all seem daunting; but what if you could never have your mother’s hug again, never cuddle in bed with the one you love, never even embrace a friend or family member? Sight, hearing, and smell are the first to be defended when the question of ‘if you had to give up one sense, what would it be?’ comes up. But how could I even tell you this without touch the keyboard?
Think about what it would be like to never be touched. By anyone. Not the extremity of being ‘bubble boy’ or locked in a germ-free room for the rest of your existence; think, living in a nursing home, a stuffy dorm, or even living alone in a new city, by yourself. Who would touch you? You could literally go days without it.
Whenever I’d visit someone in a home, no matter how difficult, my mother would remind me to hold the person’s hand as I said goodbye, hug, or kiss them, even if I hesitated.
Because if I didn’t, who else would?
Just yesterday, my amazing boyfriend [who has been wondering when he'll get mentioned in this blog! ] told me that he’d read a study that argued if couples held both hands together while they argued, they’d have more compassion in their words, and likely, a more positive argument. He also recently tested me on hugging. He read if a couple hugs for a longer-than-normal-time it builds trust. So hold on a little longer – it’ll feel uncomfortable in public, but its totally worth it.
There’s a comfort that develops among humans, and sometimes animals, through touch. I believe it does build trust, compassion, and love. A touch is a connection. A mother to a child. A friend to a friend in need. The lover to his love.
I believe that a touch can be passionate. It can also be compassionate. It could be just what we need to survive in a world isolated by technology, hatred, crime, and distance.