The Sense of Touch
"Touch has Memory - John Keats
How aware are you?
Do you know how it feels, being touched by another?
How aware are you of your preferences or the way that you naturally touch?
Since I have been consumed with other pursuits as of late, I had neglected to finish this little (ha!) foray into our senses.Right now, it dawns on me how very tactile, and demonstrative I really am. I think it has been only in the last few years that I have become aware of it.[ How about you? Do you ever think about this?
As I sit here to write about this sense, I realize that it is only possible to notice how something feels if you are aware and grounded in your body.
To be aware of these often subtle feelings and differences – likes, dislikes, annoyances, irritations – takes a certain amount of mindfulness and presence (a state that I am not always in).
When I pay attention to how I feel, I am enormously conscious of how touch and how things feel affect my daily existence and my subsequent moods.
I know am particularly affected by what I wear, what it is made from, the natural feel of fabrics against my body, the way products feel in my hair and makeup on my skin … it is almost as if I can feel it, then it has to go! The noticing of a stiffness in my hair, or a rubbing against my skin is really distracting and bothersome to me, and I will change out of or wash away anything that I feel – literally.
I do love massages, infused with essential oils, not perfume. I love sleeping in linen bedding. I have a huge aversion to things that are synthetic. I love touching and being touched. I am more uncomfortable not being able to touch someone than to hug or touch a stranger that I know for sure.
Watching my grandbaby, and feeling his soft brand new skin, I see that it is his ability to feel that seems to be heightened. How he loves being touched and kissed, and his reaction to having my breath on his tiny neck creates obvious pleasant sensations and the immediate reactions that I observe.
Take some time to just notice the often subtle sensations and your reactions to them.
Feel and touch your body, your possessions, your favourite art supplies or humans. Notice what feels good and what does not.
How do you feel when you are touched by others? Does it differ depending on who is touching you and how they are?
What about fabrics and products?
Do you see any patterns for you?
I would love to hear what you notice.