Can A Hug Heal Your Heart?

Dear Readers,

On this blog, I have often talked about my traumatic childhood and the lengths I have gone to in order to overcome it.

Every once in a while, I am reminded of what has gone before and how difficult it was to grow up in a house minus a lot of hugs.

About a year ago, my friend Nikki’s church advertised giving “free hugs” on Pride weekend to those people who wanted them because for whatever reason their parents didn’t embrace their life choice to be who they are. I thought this was an awesome idea and said, “Sign me up”

Well, my husband, sweet and supportive man that he is, decided we could do better than that, so we asked a few friends if they wanted to join the “Hug Team” and they said yes and we had about 9 people hugging. He also had some rainbow letters put on shirts for us and Vivienne and we wore them so everyone knew that “free hugs” were on offer.

We were not even to the parade route before we ran into Dylan, (who was my first Hug)

He was our own personal angel, because we noticed that Vivienne had lost her hat and he took off at a sprint and ran 2 blocks over to retrieve it, popped it on her head, and in a flash, he was gone.

We made our way to the main area of the parade, running into more people we hugged on the way. I honestly wasn’t sure if I would feel weird or awkward, but I didn’t, it was so great to just hug people and have it not be “weird”

I felt very blessed and privileged because no one has ever ostracized me or discriminated against me for loving the opposite sex. I have never had to hide my preferences or worry about losing my job or being attacked or even killed because of who I love or am attracted to.

Truly, my favourite part of this whole experiment? Watching Vivienne get loved on by everyone she met. We watched as she charmed every person and they all just loved her and she was having a great time just socializing.

I think my best hug “moment” was when I hugged this woman and she said, “Oh wow, that was like a real “Mom Hug” ! I got a little misty and said, “I am so glad”

I am aware of the healing properties of a hug, lots of articles, like this one posit the science behind why it helps.

Got Hugs? The Healing Power of a Good Embrace

The part that surprised me the most was the looks on people’s faces after we hugged, I think we did a lot of healing, and some of it actually healed me too.

I was not expecting that and it was a nice bit of lagniappe (French for extra) for sure.

Now I know we can’t go around randomly hugging people but it sucks that you can’t, because I think it would solve an awful lot of problems. Certainly not all of them, but a few, to be sure.

So what’s the point? Simple, who can you hug that might need it and taking it a step further, who can you get a hug from that might just heal your hurting heart?

Think About It.



Embrace Differences. That’s how learning occurs.

Dear Readers,

I find myself sad and angry and uncharacteristically pessimistic as I sit down to write this week’s blog.

Another shooting. 22 people dead.

22 people who will not wake up again.

22 people who had plans and dreams and wishes and now none of them will ever come true.

I am thinking a lot about that as I put my little girl to bed tonight. I don’t know the answer or the way to solve this but I do know that one thing we can do is embrace our differences and talk about them and listen to each other. It sounds simple and it is.

It’s also extremely difficult to consider another person’s opinion, life experience, and point of view when we are so enamored without  our own.

I was reminded of the importance of this as I watched my husband work on his poster for the upcoming PRIDE Parade. He was carefully outlining the words and plotting out his design and strategizing like an architect building a magnificent edifice.

In stark contrast, I looked at my poster board, and threw some elements on it, wrote out the theme, “The Answer Is Love” in loopy hand and called it done.

Our daughter colored on her poster board with no direction or plan (that we know of) and that was fun to watch.

What does all of this have to do with the shooting and how we stop future shootings?

Quite a lot, I think. To better illustrate it, I will utilize words by another writer

Aaron Sorkin as he talks about “how to beat the terrorists”

Learn things. Be good to each other. Read the newspapers, go the movies, go to a party. 
Read a book. In the meantime, remember pluralism. You want to get these people? I mean, 
you really want to reach in and kill them where they live? Keep accepting more than one 
idea. Makes 'em absolutely crazy.

What different way of thinking will you embrace today, right now to help

you learn something you didn’t know before?

Who can you listen to?

Think About It.

No, Let’s do better. No more thoughts and prayers.

Go Do Something.