Sunday, February 9, 2014

Physical Affirmation

There is a primal reassurance in being touched, in knowing that someone else, someone close to you, wants to be touching you. There is a bone-deep security that goes with the brush of a human hand, a silent, reflex-level affirmation that someone is near, that someone cares.
 - "White Night" by Jim Butcher

The touch doesn't have to be intimate, doesn't have to imply a physical relationship. I think a lot of people misconstrue that. A lot of people also seem to falsely believe that the touch either implies the desire for an intimate, physical relationship, or that there is only one kind of touch.

And that last bunch is why businesses have to have so many rules about physical contact between employees.

It's a shame really, because people who are never touched, or only ever receive the sort of touch that suggests or implies a physical relationship, but not the reassuring, caring touch... those people feel cold inside. I should know; I'm one of them.

Being cold and being around people who are cold inside isn't fun, and isn't comfortable. It's like being ostracized from your own skin... for those who have been ostracized within society and know what that feels like.

I reach out to people with my words because it's a way to touch people who refuse to let themselves be touched. Words can break through those barriers sometimes far more easily than face-to-face consolations. If I have to write something unique for every person I reach out to, I will, because every person deserves to be touched, to receive that primal reassurance.

That's a life-long project, and not an easy one. I certainly can't do it alone.