i have been hugged lots of ways.
when saying good-bye to good friends you aren't sure you will see again this side of eternity, the hugs tend to be firm, long and even mingled with tears.
when hugging my KISA after a fight, they tend to be long, with strokes on the back that say 'i am truly sorry.'
when hugging my children good-night, i usually give a 'squeezy hug' accompanied by a sneaky tickle under the arms.
but most of my hugs are probably on the lighter side. i would hate to make someone feel uncomfortable by intruding into their personal space.
well, yesterday, i was on the receiving end of one of the best hugs ever.
let me 'splain. no, let me sum up...
we all went to church yesterday morning. the littler kids go to the nursery or sunday school class, and the older 2 stay with dad or go to kids worship (their choice).
church falls right about little jd's lunchtime. so i took him to the nursing mommy area and took care of him, then took him to the nursery so that i might hear the message. i dropped him off, he seemed fine, and then i headed back to the bathroom (too much coffee) and then headed to the sanctuary. and then i heard him.
not a little cry, but a screaming cry. the kind that tugs at your heart and makes you want to lay eyes on your child immediately.
and i was in the foyer, quite a good distance from the nursery.
so i headed back over with the intent to barge in and take my child back from the offender. (of course, there wasn't any offender, just a crying baby).
alicia met me at the door. it is one of those split ones. she said to me : we can handle it. he is fine. he just needs to settle down.
me: but, alicia, i haven't been with him all week! i cannot stand to hear him cry like that!
alicia: i know (and here comes the hug)
she wrapped me up in her arms, held me so tight i wasn't gonna go anywhere, and said quietly in my ear : if you want to come in here and hold him, of course you can. but i want you to know that we can take care of him and that he will settle down soon. i remember what it was like to have to work and not see your children for long periods of time. i had to do it for a season, too. it is ok.
and she held me until i was able to stop my tears and jd's stopped, too. then, and only then, did she let me go.
and i headed back to the sanctuary (after another trip to the bathroom to fix my face) and enjoyed the service with my husband and 5 year old and even got to take communion.
it was a real HUG. one that didn't think about my personal space, one that didn't think about whether or not i am a hugger, one that showed me alicia truly cared about my emotional state right then and there.
a much needed hug.
i went back to work this past week and had to spend three long days away from my home, my children and my husband. every week i will be spending 3 long days away from them. the first time i have had to work full-time since having tic tac almost 8 years ago.
it is a hard adjustment for me. alicia knew that. and she hugged me.
that simple act was exactly what i needed to get through that moment, and it even carried me through the rest of the day.
i haven't been counting too many blessings lately, cuz things are still so hectic being in boxes and such. but i hope to take a few moments and write some of them down soon. because i know that perspective will help in the midst of this new season of my life.
for now, i just list one gift:
#109. a hug from alicia