Little Things: Hugs


What do our hugs say about us?

I find that whenever I hug someone, or they hug me, I am always the first to let go. I am also the one who doesn't hold on as tightly. Sometimes I'll let go in a hug only to find that the other is holding on tighter and longer, but I don't return the embrace. I simply stand there with my arms loosely about them as I put the slightest bit of space between us, growing increasingly uncomfortable. As if hugging is a shamefully intimate act that is indecent to be caught in. I hold my breath for them to let go, and as soon as their arms loosen even just a little, I abruptly step away, letting my arms drop to my sides, and only then can I breath again.

Sometimes I find myself letting go in a hug even when I don't want to. My heart may be aching to hold on, but my mind is telling me to let go as soon as possible. Despite this battle, my mind always rules over and I force myself to pull away - reclutantly or not. As if I'm afraid that through that hug, they will be able to read into all my deepest thoughts and feelings, and all those things I bury so deep will be discovered through a simple embrace.

Once, only once did I ever hold onto a hug. I was holding on so tightly in more ways than one, and I didn't even know. I remember telling him he should go. He asked if I wanted him to go. I didn't answer. Couldn't answer. Just stayed still, unbreathing with my arms about him and my face in his shirt. He asked again. I managed to say "Sure", in that sarcastic tone I sometimes use to conceal the immense emotions that are overwhelming me at that moment. Except it only came out a squeak, and I'm certain everything showed then because I heard the smirk in his voice as he said, "Liar. If you wanted me to go, you wouldn't be holding onto me so tightly."

At the moment he said that, and I knew I was caught in the act of Feeling, I dropped my arms and pulled away. It was like I was watching from a place outside my body, screaming at myself not to pull away, because what was wrong with holding on? But I did pull away. Why? ... I don't know. I just know I didn't want to let go, and sometimes I think I never really did let go at that moment. I'm still holding on with everything in me, squeezing too tightly to something I didn't want to lose but now only exists in these bittersweet memories fixed in the form of sharp black letters upon a screen blurring either from lack of sleep or tears.

So what does all of this say about me? ... I don't know. But I wish I had someone to hold onto right now.