All day everyday if you’re out in the world, you’re engaging in small talk. I can’t stand small talk- but I can fake it. Is that the best method though?
Recently I realized that when I encounter a moment where someone is expressing complete sincerity, I was startled. During a secret Santa card gifting, the person who made my card wrote really nice things, so I asked them if they’re a “hug” person. They said yes and we promptly hugged. It was the best hug I’ve experienced in a startlingly long time. I’m trying to think of a better way to describe this other than the feel of their energy. There are only two people I know who give this level of quality hugs where they place their hands on your back and actually… Hug. Not just the chest bump and move on, but a true hug that lingers- eyes shut with smiles on their face from the true happiness of being able to share that moment.
I had another moment where I threw out a phrase that some people take very seriously, others lightly. I will say “I love you” to my parents, close friends, and genuinely mean it, but there’s something airy about how it’s said. I was buying coffee from the schools coffee shop and a girl who is my friend’s friend was making my coffee. She’s new to the cafe, so it was taking some learning time (which I’m completely fine with). She finally delivered my coffee and as my hand grabbed the warm cup, I said “I love you” and she said “I love you too” back to me. I walked away feeling warm and fuzzy- this person provided me with my first coffee of the day and I had let her work through how to make my drink. The I-love-yous were real. More real than than when I tell my mom I love her as I jump out of the car. More real than two high schoolers saying they love each other after three months of dating. With someone I barely knew.
There’s something beautiful about genuine exchanges and it’s more than just the connection. I’d like to think that it’s the connection that’s amazing, but it’s the surrounding factors that affect it. Whether we like it or not, the world is gigantic and chaotic, and in the midst of chaos, interactions like this are rare.
I’ve been brainstorming New Years resolutions to have for 2016, and now I have a good one to add to my list: “Be genuine.”