“FOUR TO SIX!!!!”
For several years of my adolescent life my mother would scream this across the room if she saw you coming. This type of greeting frightened outsiders. Outsiders to my family can be defined as those visitors who still think my family is a bunch of insane yet harmless carnival folk. Or, those people who still hear the Twilight Zone theme music as they approach the house.
For anyone who has known my family for any amount of time have come to realize that we are VERY huggy people. For many years it seemed strange to me to shake a person’s hand upon meeting them. Protocol dictated either swapped names across the room, instant hugs and a “welcome,” from the family.
The whole “four to six” phrase comes from a study that my mother read and took to heart. I have no clue where it was written or I would reference it here. Studies show that adults should give/receive four to six hugs in a day to improve their happiness and consequently their overall health [needs citation].
I have no clue if this is true or if further studies have been made. What I do know is that I feel like warmed over crap if I don’t get hugged in a while. It can be harder to get your daily dose of hugs if you’re far away from family or friends or the people around you just aren’t very huggy.
Of late, my fiance has been away and I have been seeking hugs from other people. Visiting my family and mauling my very dear classmates for hugs whenever possible. Now that I am away from home finding hugs is a much harder thing to do. Co-workers, though genial, usually aren’t the huggy type of people and since there is no social obligation and no obligation enforced by their job description that is where the “friendship” ends.
I have not yet gotten so desperate that I must ‘accidently” bump into people at work or in the grocery store. But pretty soon I had better steal hugs from people. My buddy who lives in Austin (near where I am currently employed) is a good one for hugs, but he is currently out of town.
Hugging is something I absolutely adore and that is why it has joined my ABCs of fun.
I love all types of hugging; even on occasion the lift up and waggle like a rag doll hug (depends on who is giving it).
I’m not a huge fan of the “side hug.” Go ahead, look up “Christian Side Hug” on youtube and see what you find. It’s ridiculous but amusing.