The huggers and kissers are the residents with whom I visit who have no verbal communication skills, but who can still nod “yes” or “no,” and use hugs and kisses as their means of communication. When I hold their hand, “they’ll give it a kiss.” It’s the sweetest, most amazing thing I’ve ever seen. They’ve virtually lost their mobility, their independence, their health, everything except their love — somehow that love inside them remains and endures throughout their aging process.
I let my huggers and kissers know how much I love and appreciate them by singing to them, sitting with them as they watch television or listen to the radio, playing oldies for them on my tablet, and by returning their kisses with an ever-so-gentle hug. The toothless smiles I get back are so priceless, that all I can say is that hugs and kisses (xoxoxo) has an entirely new meaning — one that reaches beyond all obstacles and inspires me each and every day.