Perhaps the most often overlooked of the 5 senses, but on so many levels, the most necessary. Physical touch is crucial to survival. It helps things like healing, development and overall wellness. There have been studies to show that babies, if left in orphanages unheld and unconnected, suffer from physical and emotional development problems that can take a lifetime to unravel.
It is as essential as the air we breathe, the water we drink. And yet, we deprive ourselves…starving our souls of this important need.
Touch becomes such a part of the fabric of our days, it often gets overlooked or unnoticed. Wet hair. Slippery soap. Silky sheets. Velvety doggy ears. Creamy, wet clay. Pokey grass under our bare feet. They are all a part of something we take for granted as we navigate a busy day. We pass by kids and lovers with a pat on the head or tousle of the hair not realizing the impact of that one simple gesture of touch, texture, and connection.
There is nothing quite like collapsing into a loved ones arms at the end of a long day. There is nothing as essentially life giving as picking up a newborn baby and cradling them close as they melt into sleep, comfort and calm. It’s connection. It’s love. It’s belonging.
The act of touch is requires us to be present in something that happens every day. It’s so simple to take a moment and mindfully lean into this simple sense. I try to be present with pause as I touch the familiar, feeling the subtle nuances in my body. Soft. Cold. Warm. Fuzzy. Sharp. Smooth. Hard. The touch of a lover changes our body chemistry almost immediately. Notice it next time. Notice the subtle feeling when your bare feet are touching the soft, warm sand on the beach. Feel the difference when you stroke your cat’s fuzzy head. Lean into the moment a little more.
Because I am certain that if we all felt our way through life more than we are - if we just leaned into all our senses - we would lean into all those soft, juicy, delicious feelings a little more easily.