As parents, we have all raised children with that infamous phrase “Good touch and Bad touch,” making them aware of the evil in this world. When I grew up, the politically incorrect phrase directed at people not on the same intellectual level as others was, “they’re a little touched,” and we looked at them sadly. Amazing what one little word can say – and even more, what it can do. Moreover, looking back, I wonder if it was us that was out of touch, and those people we pitied, actually had and inside track to life touched by a power we will never know. Gee, who was really out of touch there?
Recent medical journals have chronicled at risk newborns fighting for life that respond when their mother or siblings are around, talking and touching them. Makes sense to me, along with Diana Ross who made us all feel good by being touched in the morning. After all, reaffirmation is what we all hope to find in this life isn’t it? And without touch me, touch me, touch me you are left with just a rocky horror.
Watching life from a more cynical albeit realistic eye lately, as I live my life alone without daily emotional touches from another person, I have confirmed the one thing missing more than money and jobs in our current world, is “touch.” I had help there though, from my 16 year old dog whom I call my “air fern” who has pointed it out – indeed, man’s best friend he is. I know I will lose my beloved pup this year, so everyday he is with me I am thankful. He is gray, almost blind, deaf, “sundowns,” and just about nothing goes in or out. However, he loves. When I see him, he knows it is me and without teeth, his tongue waving freely, he will lick my cheek and all is well in the world. The connection not only confirms the past 16 years, but each of us as well. Love may keep us together, but it the simple touch that makes us want to be together.
In this world of too many “me” generation X-Y-Z’ers, the reality is simple, we have all lost touch. So much has been made of personal boundaries, and relationships, that the main focus of our existence has been shelved – the simple action of reaching out to one another, offering compassion, help, love and most of all a touch. We are no different from the struggling newborn, which is between life and death, unsure if they will stay in this world or not. All it takes is an honest heart to open that all too often closed door.
I guess I always took touching for granted, since I was raised in an affection home, in a time when you did hug friends, hold hands and for no particular reason just embraced one another. Go to a church, nursing home, bingo parlor, whatever your flavor and see what happens to the older people there. They will motion you over like a child and offer of all things, a hug! They will take your hand as they talk, look you in the eye and smile and more likely than not, kiss you good-bye. And guess what? When you leave, you’ll feel better emotionally, but maybe worse mentally realizing what is missing in your life and the world. A Touch.
My granddaughter looks at me with an innocent smile and says “hug you me,” and will extend her pudgy little hand saying “come grandma, come” wanting me to share a moment with her. How sad the day when this world successful deprograms her, I hope she is strong and refuses to let it happen and continues to make a difference each day.
It is no wonder we have a world of sexting, scandals and constant killings of children, women and men, not to mention what happens to animals! When you take honest compassion and emotion out of the equation, all you have left are cold hard actions, which can be interchanged with any situation. In case you never heard it, there is a fine line between love and hate, and the only way to direct it positively is with a touch. If you need it illustrated listen to people talk when a person upwards of 60 passes away now, they will say, “Just don’t make ‘em like that anymore” and they are right! Those generations knew a simple handshake was a secure business deal, a pat on the back was as good as a contract and a hug confirmed no matter what you would never be alone.
I wonder how fast the cynical dog kill dog world we live in would change, if everyone woke up with a smile and offered a hug and a positive thought. The chain reaction of liking one another, on something other than an invisible computer screen social network would be shocking! Maybe someone can make an App for it – If however, you are one of the lucky ones, who happily still go through life with that outlook, wanting to make a difference, good for you, you must know a child or an elderly person. However, for the rest of the world, that only see’s the glass half empty, wondering why they are also empty inside, look around your life, and find a way to bring compassion back and you’ll put your finger on it in no time