My Point of Heu
So... I am probably the most affectionate and huggable person you know. I might dare to say I am actually quite famous for my hugs, full, unique, ultimate and with all my heart and body. I am going to go out on a limb and say they are pretty legendary.
Now with the social distancing and physical distancing requirements in place... it has hurt my heart not to hug people anymore. But you may recall when Hawaii's flu season was rampant this winter I tried to initiate a no-hugging policy, so as to avoid getting sick. But I was met with abrasive gestures, multiple scoffs and forced hugs. Fast forward to January and yes, I got sick. It was definitely some sort of corona virus in that I had a fever, cough and was down for about 4 days with a lingering cough for about a month. Luckily when I recovered, and prior to COVID, I went out and got my flu shot - amen.
Now that COVID-19 has resulted in 4,525,497 known cases globally and 307,395 confirmed deaths (as of May 17, 2020) even with global lockdowns and stay at home orders for millions... I am noticing some people are still hugging and kissing like there is no risk and no reason not to hug. When this happens I feel a great sense of awkwardness and uncomfortableness. Why? Well... if I am the only one not hugging, then it honestly makes me look like some sort of killjoy or physically and mentally withdrawn from the situation or person.
The real answer is I rather be safe and not spread germs. I don't know who you've been in contact with and who you have hugged and kissed prior to me... and I honestly tend to have a sore throat often and what if I am sick? Even worse is the possibility of exposure. There are some people who are asymptomatic and show no signs of infection at all; how horrible would it be if I was that person and I brought it to your house and spread it to your entire family?
But as I start to see this sense of rebellion or disconnect from medical suggestions/government orders - I begin to observe that many choose to disregard precautions and live their day-to-day lives like there is nothing to be concerned about. If I am the only person out of 10 who isn't hugging, then I guess it is inevitable that I will eventually contract whatever it is that you may be carrying, and you will contract what I am carrying too.
Luckily, here in Hawaii we are amongst the best places in the world with the lowest COVID-19 infection. I feel that I have taken all the precautions to not get sick and have followed them to a T (since early March). Now as we slowly transition to normal life... I can see people initiating handshakes, hugs and close contact again. I thought perhaps that distancing would be the new norm, but I feel it isn't the case. Many news agencies are reporting contact isolation as the best method to reduce the risk, but those are people who are already infected.
So here is the question? When will I be comfortable hugging people again? What do I do when people forcibly try to hug me? And should I just bite the bullet and hug again because we are all going to get sick anyway? In the meantime I have tried the shaka, bowing, and touching other parts like feet, butt and elbows - but still people are so awkward and it's just an awkward situation to be in because everyone's boundaries are different.
Food for thought:
"Hugging loved ones who don’t live with you is “not recommended” until a coronavirus vaccine is found, U.K. Health Secretary Matt Hancock said." - Forbes