I've discovered something odd about myself: I hate when people touch me, but physical touch seems to be my form of comfort.
See, I have four brothers and three sisters. With that many siblings, you don't generally want people touching you, because it tends to end up being something unpleasant (ie, tickling). You get jumpy when people get close. During high school, however, I had a couple really good friends who were very much touchy sort of people. Not in an awkward way at all, they just liked giving hugs, and personal space bubbles seemed to evaporate when they were around each other. It was amazing how much it helped me during high school when I was dealing with a rather nasty bout of depression. There's this transfer of love and compassion for each other when you touch, and it really helped pull me through.
Of course, lately I haven't been extremely touchy. I tend to pull into my shell a little when I start a new experience, which college definitely falls into. I keep to myself, don't really talk to too many people. And I certainly don't let too many people touch me. That is awkward, and if you're touching me without my consent, it means you're a creeper and I want you as far away from me as possible. ;) However, I have also been more than usually stressed out lately (last semester was full of ups and downs and loop-de-loops that left my emotions all knotted and ugly), and I haven't really been able to deal with it as easily as I would like to.
I was pondering all of this stress during church today and wondering just how I was ever going to move on, when Kay asked if she could braid my hair.
O.O That doesn't happen often, people braiding my hair. My two older sisters were in high school by the time I started kindergarten, my mother didn't have much time to do my hair with so many other kids she had to take care of, and my little sister knew as much about hair as I did: squat. Which means having someone play with my hair is a huge treat. Not only did the gesture mean a lot to me, but while she was braiding, I was able to let go of some of my stress and put a little bit of order back into my life.
So yeah. Physical touch is paradoxically extremely comforting. Just don't try it unless I'm comfortable with you. ;)
Fare thee well, friend!