My daughter whispered in my ear tonight that she loves hugging her teacher because she's, well, "soft right there" (pokes Mom swiftly in the boob).
This made me smile because it made me think a bit about hugging. You see, my mother was rather generously endowed in the breast area, and her ample bosom made for some really great hugging. You kind of eased into the hug, ran the risk of disappearing for a while, and hung on as if clinging to a squishy life raft of goodness
I remember as a kid wondering how I'd do as a mom. I wasn't thinking about nurture or discipline, and cup size was far, far from my mind. I was primarily concerned with the arenas of fruit and vegetable cutting. I admired my mom's deft skill with a paring knife. I wondered, would I be able to carve perfect v's in apple slices to rid them of their seeds? And making carrot sticks? That seemed way too hard. Fortunately, I've mastered the apple...and the carrot sticks? Well, bagged baby carrots came along just in the nick of time.
But what about hugging? The years I was breastfeeding were the only time I had "Oh my goodness they are so big I cannot see my feet!" boobs. For the babies they were a means to a meal, and to Tom they were pretty much off limits. "These are WORKING boobs-- back off!" Before and since, I've had more of a marble in a tube sock thing going on.
So, do I feel like a mom when I hug? Of course I do, because I am one, even if my hugs may not have the same near-suffocating quality my mom's did. And moms come in all shapes in sizes from AAA cups to FFF. Some moms do not have any breasts anymore, and they are no less motherly for it. We are THE mom our kids are supposed to have. I like to tell my kids what my mom told me, particularly when I'd gripe about something, "I'm the best mom you'll ever have."
But back to hugging: my friend Kris told me, just last week, "Anna, hugging your mom was like hugging a pillow. Hugging my mom was like hugging a board." I'd like to think that wasn't all about size, but more about her willingness to be huggy in the first place. And I hope I've got that. What my hugs might lack in bosom-itude, I make up with an extra squeeze, a grunt (umph!), or a pat on the back.
And during this time of rampant New Year's Resolutions, if you are worried about a little extra padding here or there, just remember the joy that softness can bring with a cozy squeeze or a squishy lap to sit on (I've definitely got one of those!).
For as we said in my house growing up, "Men are nice, but there's NOTHING like hugging a WOMAN!!"