Warm Arms of the Midwest

I’m quite certain that I would enjoy life more if I could only be hugged more often.

Please allow me to collect the tattered remaining shreds of my masculinity after typing that last sentence, and continue.

Josh Lewis is an inherently social creature. Many of you know this. I like people. I really like them a lot, in fact. I thrive off of social interaction. As far as friends and loved ones goes, I got to see Abby, Amy, Carrie, Eddie, Eric, Helen, Jeff, Joe, Kevin, Lance (and his cool girlfriend Tara, whom I had never met before), Luke, Nathan, Neal, Sam, Steph’s whole family (and most of her extended family) and my whole family (and most of my extended family) including my awesome 9-month-old niece Elise. She is so cute and wonderful. If that list hasn’t sunk in yet, I’ll just simplify it by saying that we saw a whole ton of people and I loved every minute of it. Steph can sometimes get worn out by social interaction, but personally it makes me feel full. Satisfied, like one might feel after a really great meal. I guess that’s how you might define the word “extrovert” and I can only plead guilty to that charge.

One of the reasons that I feel so full is that it’s been a long time (six months counts as a long time in my book) since I’ve been able to sit down with many people that I have a real sense of history with. As I’ve said before, Steph and I are meeting some really awesome people in California, but of course even the extrovert is going to have a special place in his heart for those friendships that go deeper and have weathered some difficulties to become true, rare gems. Many of the people on that list above are like that for me. They’re irreplaceable and precious, each having their own special characteristics that I treasure in them. It’s certainly fun to get to know new people (which I did even over this vacation) but I like being able to have friends that can start with me where we last left off, and know that we’re continuing a long, wonderful trail.

I’m not making the hug-related comment to imply that Stephanie doesn’t hug me often enough. Don’t misunderstand me! I think she might have to defy some law of physics in order to hug me more often than she does. What was it… the Transitive Hug Property, I think. Something like that. What I’m saying is that being surrounded by dear friends is, to me, like having a strong net woven underneath one’s soul. A sort of soul-hammock, if you will. Stephanie is the most brilliant point of light in my life, but she can’t make a net all by herself, can she? No one would expect that. So it’s invigorating to be with so many loved ones and give and get hugs and see how they’ve really been doing. To look them in the eye and test them and learn about what God is doing in their lives.

I may expound on this later in the week. I may not. I have no idea. But to all of you that took time out of your sometimes-busy schedules to be with Stephanie and me, I can only say thank you. Thank you so much. It means the world to me.

5 Comments

  1. POP
    Posted January 2, 2004 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    We all need a a significant amount of hugs. I’m glad I read your blog so I could administer a proper amount before you found the way to San Jose.

  2. Posted January 2, 2004 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

    La, la, la, la, la, la, la, la. If you don’t get it read the last four words of KL!’s post. I couldn’t resist…

    The nice thing about hugs is that they are always two-way. It is really hard to resist giving a hug back when you are getting one in return. 🙂

  3. Posted January 4, 2004 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

    Glad to hear you enjoyed your vacation back home so much.

  4. eddie
    Posted January 4, 2004 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

    Josh. You are loved.
    Steph. You are loved.
    Dearly.

  5. Neal
    Posted January 5, 2004 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    Mmmmm. Warm fuzzy central. At any rate, the only bad thing about you and Steph visiting MN is that you leave. Grrr. Now I miss you guys even more.

    Meh. Looking forward to those visits and having them means a whole lot to me, besides the fact that their positive outweighs the measely negative found above.