There are no universals, so please ask.

The other day I read a post that offered up information about hugs and hugging. It seems the optimal time for a hug is 20 seconds and  we should be giving or getting 8-12 hugs a day – all in the service of better health.

Just reading that started to trigger a panic attack for me.  I do NOT like to hug or be hugged, particularly by strangers or near-strangers or friends or family or people I don’t know or people I do know …Please, just don’t.

I particularly hate hugs that are launched at me without warning – my brain and body interpret that as a physical attack and I sometimes react accordingly – try to explain jerking away from someone and pushing them away, and then there is that right hook to the jaw.  Basically – don’t touch me without permission.

Quite obviously I don’t do massages.

And yes, I am claustrophobic.

And then there are those horrors called weighted blankets – I can’t even. Being held down, unable to move – OMG – screaming-jesus panic attack.  It makes me anxious just reading about them.

Yet – I am a big hand-holder, at least with my husband. I am also a leaner, I lean into/on my husband whenever we are standing next to each other – don’t know why I do that, but I do. Then again, I don’t recall doing that with anyone else.

Please people, be aware that not everyone likes hugs, or likes to be touched. Some people experience that as a physical attack – can you get that? Please, get that.

Things to remember

1. Never say YES when you truly and deeply and adamantly mean NO, just because you want someone to like you, or not dislike you; or because you just want them to shut up. Or because no matter how often or how loud you ARE saying NO, you realize no one is listening.

2. Never put someone’s wants ahead of your needs. There is a difference between want and need. Know what that is and act accordingly. Take what you need because no one is going to give it to you.

3. Woulda-Coulda-Shoulda will drag you to the edge of the mountain and throw you off, laughing as you crash on the rocks of regret..

4. Remember that  “Women need men like fish need bicycles”. Or to quote myself “I love men. I never want to be without one. They make great pets.”

5. Your family are the people who love you, no matter what; who put out a hand when you wobble and lift you up when you fall. These people do not necessarily share your DNA.  If the people who share your DNA don’t do these things then they are NOT your family and deserve no consideration.

6.  People will not love you the way you need to be loved but rather they way they need to love you. Accept it and do not expect any more. Do not ask why.

7. Trust no one. Human nature is such that when it comes down to the nitty-gritty survival trumps all. They may not mean any harm but if it’s you or them, guess who wins. Altruism does not exist in humans – the seeming self-sacrifice is driven by ego.

8. There is no fine print on your birth certificate. If did not come with guarantees or entitlements.

9. Despite what may have been done to you when you were too young to understand, fight back or take charge, at some point, if you are lucky, you do grow old enough to understand, fight back, take charge. Your life becomes your own – so own it.

Despite what seems like cynicism, but really are lessons learned, I also believe I am never alone or unprotected or have ever been unloved…

Categories *

Enough Awready…

Curmudgeons & Grouches

Cuddle your cut-offs,
Snuggle your slippers.
If they don’t bring joy
It’s time to ditch ’em.

Bypass the donuts,
Say no to all bread,
Glutens verboten,
Inhale kale instead.

Look on the bright side,
Exist in the now.
Always be grateful,
They’ll all tell you how.


Where are the grouches,
Where the curmudgeons,
People like me who
Live in high dudgeon.

We like our messes,
Our stomachs are fine.
So shove your good cheer
Where the sun doesn’t shine.

© Grace St. Clair

Categories *