The Touch

So, I was reading through all my old REAL SIMPLE magazines (who knew I was a charter subscriber?) so that I could throw them out. I’m in a de-clutter mood and have been for a few weeks, so I have been going through years of REAL SIMPLEs, yanking out articles or recipes I want to keep.

By now, I should know the best mascaras and mops, tricks for cleaning ceiling fans and making the most of coffee filters. I know what colors work best for my eyes and which swimsuits for my thighs (I’m “pear shaped” in case you didn’t notice.) As a random note, an African friend of mine said I was born on the wrong continent, that men in Africa especially appreciate my shape. Now you tell me! I should have moved decades ago :-).  I digress. . . .

My Mom has gotten all the women’s magazines for years, Woman’s Day, Better Homes and Garden, McCalls’s, etc.  If I could compile all the hints from Heloise and best-testers, and magic make-overs, there would literally be millions. I should know every household money-saver and how to get the bottom of your favorite lipstick out and use it ‘til every last raspberry rose lip tint was expended fully. I should know a thousand ways to serve chicken and remove wine stains, how to wear the little black dress and present the perfect chignon.

As I was skimming through an old REAL SIMPLE, I came across an article about the power of touch: it decreases stress, brightens your mood, increases your immune system and enhances sleep, among other things. Skin is the first organ that grows and, of course, the largest. It needs attention! There was a little section on single women that caught my eye: they documented the touches they received in a day. One woman counted the coffee guy whose hand touched her as he handed her the latte. Another counted her boss who put a hand on her shoulder. Those aren’t really touches, I thought.

I felt so sad. Babies die for lack of touch! Are untouched people going to shrivel up and die for lack of physical affection? I thought of my daily touch test. And I thought, Sure, there are days I don’t see people much when I’m working at home. But my mind went more to my friends who always hug when we say hello and goodbye, for their children who are snuggly and still like to sit in my lap, for the babies in my life, for my feline rubbing up to my legs and talking up a storm in the mornings when I put on my “best of the brands” mascara. I thought of my friend who said that massage is vital, not a luxury for those of us not in long-term relationships (or who don’t live in Latin America, where touch is like breathing.) I thought of my reasonably-priced masseuse.

I felt glad that I was doing pretty well. And then my Mom (the same Mom of all the women’s magazines) sent me this hilarious video. And I felt quite content and grateful for the touches in my life.

2 Comments on “The Touch”

  1. that video was absolutely hilarious. i’m crying i’m laughing so hard. thanks for sharing. and thanks for sharing your heart. i love you, judith!

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