According to the internet (awarenessday.com) National Hugging Day was started in the 1980's by a guy named Kevin from Michigan (it's cold there, too, so we don't blame him for wanting to encourage a good exchange of body heat.)

"This holiday had to encourage others to hug everyone, no matter who they are: members of family, friends or strangers. Different studies prove that hugging helps build a good immune system and decrease risk of heart disease, lower blood pressure and trigger the release of healthy hormones. The record of most hugs given by one person in one hour belongs to Nick Vujicic. He hugged 1,749 people at an expo centre in Oregon in 2010."

Now, as a hugger myself, I am totally in favor of any day that encourages this beautiful exchange of happy between two people (or more, in the case of a group or family hug.) But obviously, this is the era of Covid-19, and hugging is not only frowned upon for anyone outside of your bubble, but it's downright discouraged! And I get that, too. No one wants to be responsible for making Grandma or Grandpa sick.

So how do you celebrate National Hugging Day during a pandemic?

No seriously, this hugger is asking because, as I'm sure all of the huggers out there are feeling the same way; I miss giving people hugs!

I consider myself lucky because I live with 4 kids, which means I do get some hugs from them because they're part of my bubble. But I'm someone who, when I first meet you, will typically go in for a hug. I love giving hugs. I love getting hugs. And this last year has been lacking in that ability to show affection in my most favorite fashion. I suppose, if you have a pet, you could hug your pup or kitty. If that's not an option, hugging a pillow might take the edge off of your embrace withdrawal.

They really need to come up with a way to fill this gap for the next major world catastrophe. At a time where we need hugs the most, to not be able to give them has been torture.

So, although we may need to modify our hugging this year, here's hoping by next we'll all be fully embracing the thought behind National Hugging Day, and never take a hug for granted again!

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