The password for today is 2 arms, 10 seconds.
Admittedly, I am a little late to the rules of hug etiquette. For years, I would, often begrudgingly, throw one arm around the shoulder of the person I was hugging and lightly hold on for about 4 seconds before letting go. It was not until a much wiser friend of mine informed me that I was, in fact, doing it wrong that I began to ponder the idea that there was a wrong way to hug. I’m still not sure whether or not you can fail in this respect but if you can, I have been doing so for most of my life.
My first faux pas was the duration of my attempts. Apparently anything less than 10 seconds does not count. But it would seem that my most aggresse point of failure was the one armed approach, which I employed to not make it too much like an actual hug. Not sure what the logic was behind that but it seems that when you hug with only one arm, you do not really lean into the other person, which apparently is part of the point of the gesture. As my friend explained it, in a fully committed two-armed hug, you actually end up supporting some of the other person’s weight and vice versa. It becomes a reciprocal act of trust and affection, two things lacking from my method.
So as camp begins to wind down and the dreaded goodbyes loom nearer, I hope that you learn from my 20 something years of failure and fully commit. Follow the trend that you have set in your time here when you shared a secret or embarrassing story with your tent in whispers well past TAPs or allowed yourself to ask for the help that you knew you needed but did not want to admit to and embrace the people you care about wholeheartedly. Recognize that it is only by allowing others to support us that we are able to support them because while the hug will end, the knowledge that you have found friends here, who will shoulder the weight that life brings with it, will not.