I've always been a reluctant toucher and receiver of touch. I don't have a story or a trauma or a tangible reason for this, it's just always been true. And I always thought it was wrong--that is, something wrong with *me.* Other people liked being hugged, hugging. It just seemed so normal, so necessary to human connection, communication.
So, I became a Reiki practitioner, yoga teacher and herbalist, and I learned to touch people in an alter-ego way, if you will. And it helped--my personal reservation was completely removed and I found compassion in touch. Professionally. Personally, it was still, well, not organic.
Then I went to massage school--nothing like walking through the fire, after all... And, again, touching people continues to be an act of compassion, an organic, voluntary impulse. The most difficult, the most humbling experience is constantly allowing myself to be touched, a struggle. But. Less and less as time goes on.
Do I organically and spontaneously hug the ones I love in this world? Of course. It just doesn't occur to me to initiate touch, but I will gladly return the impulse. I've finally decided it's nothing wrong with me, but a boundary with which I was born. To cross those boundaries (beyond the necessary push and pull of comfort zone expansion) is to deny who I am.
And that? It's just exhausting. There is no right way to be in this world.