Sunday, June 22, 2008


What is it about the human touch that makes everything feel alright? It could be a kiss on the cheek from a mom, a hug from a best friend, or the fingers of a soul mate running through your hair; no matter what kind of touch or who it is from, as long as it is genuine it will comfort you. Have you ever noticed that when you are having a bad day and have been doing everything you can to not break down throughout the entire day, all it takes is a concerned friend’s hand on your shoulder or the warmth of your mom’s hug or your husband’s caring hands on your face to unzip whatever strong front you have put up and let the tears flow out? What is it about human touch that makes us open up like that? Is it the touch? Or is it the person doing the touching?

It has been found (not surprisingly) that men tend to limit themselves to ritual touching, like shaking hands or patting each other on the back, while women touch much more warmly and gently, with hugs for example, to express support, comfort, and affection. But what about the touch between husband and wife? (Or husband and husband or wife and wife if you live in Vermont or now California…) There is some kind of electricity there that fuels the fire of life. So then what happens when you don’t have that all-powerful touch? What happens when that electricity has been rerouted for the time being? Are you just supposed to deal with an electricity –free life? Or do you dig out the candles from your emergency kit while you wait for the electrician to come fiddle with the circuit breaker so you can have some light? The candles might not give off enough light or power to live a perfect life, but they create a soft glow that can lead you down dark hallways or help you read the words on a page in a book. During a deployment, the candlelight comes from various sources - jobs, working out, friends, family, volunteering, etc. Every time you have a good day, it’s like adding a candle. Have a bad day, though, and you might as well blow all but one of them out. But all you need is one. That single candle is like one of those trick birthday candles that never go out no matter how hard you blow. I used to hate not being able to blow those damn things out, but now it’s my saving grace. There seems to always be a twinkle of light in my heart that allows me to go about my everyday life, regardless of if it is the result of 10 fully burning candles or one little spark from that last trick candle that won’t let the flame die. That spark is guiding me down a long, dark tunnel, at the end of which there doesn’t seem to be a light.

That’s ok, though, I can light my own way.

1 comment:

ButlerWifey said...

Human touch is an incredible thing. You are right, no matter what kind of mood you are in, the right touch from the right person can make those bad feelings vaporize. That is part of what is so hard about having our husbands gone. This is the one bad feeling that no one else can heal. The only thing that will make it better is his touch, a kiss on the cheek a hug filled with security. But until he comes home, there will always be that un-healable bad day. Love reading your blog! I hope you were able to avoid the Bobs at the gym and yeah I totally hate nasty sweat spray! haha, so gross. : )

Why we wait.