Hugging Daddy

It’s my first guest blogger! You can’t see, but I’m doing a little celebratory dance here at my desk.

I met Chad DeKatch a little more than a year ago when we were cast in Caroline, or Change together. Since then he’s become quite dear to me. When he told me about this hugging revelation, it resonated with me largely because I am super put off by wimpy hugs. They are seriously one of my biggest pet peeves. Hugs that make you feel like the hugger finds you disgusting, hugs that make you wonder if you smell bad, hugs that imply the hugger’s arms are made of limp spaghetti…eeew! The worst. Seriously, even when the dreaded side hug is necessary for propriety’s sake, it can still be done without being lame. If I can rid the world of just a few of those weak huggers I’d be happy. But Chad’s got an even better reason to give good hugs…read on.304286_2356248993696_965799570_n

One thing I can say about my dad is that he was a hugger. He was also the manliest man I’ve ever known. He was a cop for 25 years; the head of homicide in Flint, Michigan (at one point the murder capital of the country) and then later chief. Tall, broad shoulders, head shaved bald, gruff voice, football coach, cleaned guns when my sister brought a guy home, etc. etc. etc. (fill in all other masculine attributes). Now my dad and I did not have a good relationship by any stretch of the word until his last year here on Earth (which I am grateful for). I may not have had the father-son relationship that we all dream about, but I always knew that when my dad was going in for a hug, he was really going to hug me.

That act from my dad has translated into the rest of my life. I’ll admit it…I’m a hugger. And I’m not talking about just a nice polite hug. I wrap you up. There is no shame whatsoever. I find that is one area of my life where I don’t have time to worry about what others might think. When I go in for a hug I want the person to know that I am really going to hug them. It may not always go smoothly at first, but the more times I hug someone the more they just accept it.

Now I know as men, hugging can be a little difficult and awkward. There are many types. There’s the “handshake pull-in, shoulder bump, double back pat, waists at comfortable distance” hug. Also the “extremely stiff back, single back pat with fists, get out as quick as you can” hug. There is even the “go in for a hug but get a stiff arm and it turns into an awkward fist bumping thing” hug. Each of these hugs say, “Yeah I care about you, but I’m a man and this is how men hug other men.”

So I got to thinking. When I have the undeserved honor to stand in God’s presence, my true Daddy, how will I hug Him? I have a feeling that I’m not even going to have a choice in the matter. I will be wrapped up in the warmest, strongest bear hug that I’ve ever experienced. It will be filled with such love and security, my finite mind cannot wrap around it.

So if that is the case, and if I’m striving to live like Daddy in every way, then why wouldn’t I try to hug like Daddy? When I think of it that way, it seems so simple. I know it may be hard at first, but it will pay off in the long run.

Could you imagine trying to stiff arm Daddy and do a fist bump thing instead of hugging Him? I can see His face, smiling as He says, “Yeah right! Get over here!”

When you hug someone, HUG LIKE DADDY.

WRAP THEM UP and let them know that you’re not afraid to hug them.

Will you accept the challenge? Let’s TAKE BACK HUGGING!!!!

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