Do you know the power of touching others?
How often are you touched?
How often do you touch others?
As a Navy Wife, I have to say I didn't realize that I had not been touched in months other than a quick hug to family members here and there, until I was up at school one day and my teacher said "Five minute massage break". Everyone had to find a partner and massage each other's upper back, shoulders, and neck for 2-3 minutes and then switch. I was the first to start the massaging and I didn't think much of it. Then our teacher said "Switch!". It was then that I realized, I hadn't been touched in a very long time. I felt so stiff and rigid while I was being massaged. The more that I tried to hide those feelings, the more they showed. My teacher looked over at me and said "Wow, you are having a hard time with this aren't you?". I felt the tears begin to well up in my eyes and I couldn't even say anything, I just mouthed "yes". She said "Well we are going to break you of that!". Then when we had finished the massage break she began to talk about the power of touch. She said that she has had students in the past that looked forward to that massage break. One student imparticular had asked her if they were going to be doing the massage break that weekend, she replied "No, we will do something else, I like to change things up a bit." It was then that she realized she couldn't seem to get the woman out of her head. She asked her about it the next day and the woman responded that she looks forward to that massage because it is the only nurturing that she gets. My teacher responded "I had no idea that you were alone" the student replied "I'm not I have four children and a husband", my teacher then responded "I had no idea that you were lonely".
As I heard my teacher tell this story, I could feel my heart in my throat. I have always handled my husband being gone pretty well. It isn't easy, but we are lucky enough right now to be able to talk to each other everyday. I realized though, that I was becoming lonely. I am one of those people who will find reasons that I cannot be touched. People will offer to do a massage on me, energy work, etc and I often times will refuse and come up with an excuse as to why I cannot be worked on. Even to this day, I'm not a fan of being touched. I can give quick hugs, but I am not used to nor am I too thrilled with being touched.
After that weekend at school, I realized that I needed to be okay with being touched. Easier said than done. I began to pray that God would just take that feeling away from me. After all, when my husband comes home- the last thing I want to do is push him away. Just when I thought, "Mind over Matter, if you tell yourself you don't like being touched then you won't like being touched. If you tell yourself that some touch is good then you will live and you will be happy about it"... I saw a dear friend and associate of mine. She had realized one day that I didn't like being touched but she didn't say that she noticed. What did she do? When I went to leave she said "Come, give me a hug" and I went to hug her and let go and she continued to embrace me. This felt awkward and I tried to push her away and she continued to hug me tighter. I even said "ummm..." and she replied "shut up- I am going to hug you until you aren't so stiff" my response "........." and then something happened that I did not expect and I don't think she expected it either: I cried.. and I don't mean "sniff sniff" I mean like an ugly cry, tears rolling down my cheeks faster than they could be dried, my whole body actually leaning into the hug, and my head resting on her shoulder-- oh and makeup all over her lab coat! ha! When she finally let me go she muttered "you should meditate more, it would be good for you-- oh and you are welcome. I will see you when I see you" and she rushed out and onto whatever else she had on her agenda that day. Here I sat, still sniffing, and getting trying to salvage the bit of makeup I might have left on. It was then that I realized that mind over matter in this situation did not work. So I went and had an energy session done that included massage- as much as I didn't want to do it. I can't say that I had a release like I did when hugging my associate, but I'm sure it helped in the grand scheme of things, after all energy work is different.
Well I began to offer Hungarian Hair Treatments to friends and family and some clients of mine. This includes getting oil massaged into your scalp, some neck rubbing, and oil being rubbed through your hair. It is very relaxing and it is a wonderful thing to have done- and it stimulates hair growth. I recently have had the privilege of gaining a new friend, who happens to be from India. Indian women are known for their beautiful hair, and they happen to have these special hair oil treatments that are done like once a week and it is apparently pretty normal to see a woman in India walking around with oil in her hair. Well I offered to do this hair treatment on my new friend and she happily accepted- I mean who is going to turn down girl talk and tv show?? She also happens to be one of the few people I have met who is extremely spiritual and we can sit and talk for hours (and I mean hours) about spirituality and how things have happened in our lives that lead us here, and how we understand each other differently. I have to say it is really nice to talk to someone who just straight up gets you and doesn't think you are crazy and you don't think they are crazy. Well her only stipulation for me doing her hair was to let her do mine (oh boy I have to be touched again!). I sat there and tried telling her no but then I was like "eh what the heck, I can try something new, and it would be nice to have my head rubbed". So I did her hair and she did mine. I felt so great and relaxed afterwards, to the point that I felt awkward. I didn't know what to do or what to say to her besides "Thanks!". We ended up having a sleep over and watched Hulu until we fell asleep. Now those of you who may know me know that I have a sleep disorder where I can go months with only sleeping 1-3 hours a night, and those 1-3 hours are usually broken up. That can go on for months and then all of a sudden (usually with the help of medication or herbs) I will sleep like 16 hours. Well I have not been taking any herbs lately- (I went off of them and then am slowly reintroducing them to check the amounts I really need). That night that my friend did my hair treatment, I slept without waking up for the first time in about at least seven months, and then I came home, did some yoga and suddenly woke up five hours later laying on the floor in my yoga room.
There is a scripture, that I don't remember exactly where it is, but it talks about leaving your peace with someone. I think that having my hair done and my head rubbed on and in a sense being loved on really allowed me to relax to the point of real rest. I am also a big believer in Energy- I think the mood in which you cook affects the food, I believe the mood in which you give affects the person receiving, etc, etc. My friend was thrilled to be doing my hair and happy to do it for me. There was no bad energy there it was all love and girl talk and peace and fun.
My experiences over the last few months have lead me to really believe- beyond the research that says human touch is a good thing and healing- that human touch is honestly a necessity in our lives. My husband hugged and kissed and cuddled with me daily before he left for the Navy and I have to say I took it for granted. I even told him to "get off" me more than once while trying to sleep (I literally was his human body pillow) and now I would not trade that touch for anything. Human touch is absolutely necessary.
Think about who you touched today. Did you touch them with love? Were you happily giving a hug? Were you joyful in shaking hands with that business associate? Think about it, every touch can mean something to someone. You may not know it but that could be the only positive touch someone is receiving that day or that month.
Who am I?
My name is Jessica Kellaway! I am the earth loving, natural parenting, Jesus loving weirdo your mama might have warned you about!