When you greet people, or say goodbye to them…. do you hug them? Kiss them? Both? Do you have those awkward moments of hesitation, not sure if you should transition to a kiss from a one-armed hug, only to find yourself kissing that person on the neck, the ear…or worse, right smack on the lips?! Then just pretend it didn’t happen. “We’re cool…..”
I have this problem.
Really wasn’t too bad until I introduced a whole other culture into my circle of friends and family. With my husbands family, it’s natural and even expected to kiss each cheek hello and goodbye. It took me by surprise at first, but by now it’s second nature. Or even first nature, because I’m so used to doing it, I start to double kiss my friends and my own family who have no idea what I’m doing to them.
Then I sometimes just want to hug someone hello, one of the double kiss people… and I find myself kind of holding them in place against my body, perhaps against their will because I’ve committed to the hello hug, and I feel like a double kiss on top of that is just a little too much lovin’. I let go when they stop struggling.
I sometimes think about this ahead of time, and it makes it that much worse for me when it comes time to greet people… I find myself panicking and trying to follow their lead and just turn my head accordingly. Some of the double kiss people just try to hug me out of courtesy for me, and this often happens when I’m trying to just kiss them, out of courtesy to them.
Feels like that really awkward teenage groping all over again, except without the raging hormones. So it’s just embarrassing.
I really thought I was alone with these thoughts….then I talked to my sister today.
We had Jenna’s big birthday party yesterday, she was 2!! We had a nice multi-cultural group of people, who for the most part are not in danger of being hugged or kissed by anyone outside of their comfort zones. But my sister is like a little sister to my husband too, and she has met his family on enough occasions to warrant some sort of embrace at the end of the day.
She saw my husband talking to his cousin, and wanted to say goodbye, but was literally stumped because she didn’t know if she should also hug that guy…or should she kiss him? Is she allowed to kiss him? One cheek, both cheeks??
It was too stressful, so she completely avoided the whole thing and snuck out, only to call me today and confess her own awkwardness.
I love my sister. When I see her on Christmas, I’m going to double kiss AND hug her.