Oxytocin For Everyone on Thanksgiving

When I was the head nurse at the student health center, one day I had a young man come to see me who was clearly in distress. He was very tall, lanky and had long arms. He had grown out of his pants, his shirt was too small and he could not stop shaking while he was talking. It was obvious to me that he was not fitting into the university culture.  Come to find out he was not doing well in school, was being teased and basically did not have any friends. I found out that his parents were putting a lot of pressure on him to get in, fit in, and do well in school. It was the perfect environment for developing an addiction. He had no friends was ostracized, and the object of being bullied. After a heart to heart conversation, he finally stopped shaking. I just let Jesus love him through me. We came up with some solutions to help him make it through school. I knew if he was not helped it would not graduate, be a victim of bullying and not do well in social environments. Before he left my office, I asked him if I could hug him. He looked at me as if I had slapped him…. He said hug me? I said yes, I want to give you a big fat hug…..he said…..the last time I was hugged I was about ten years old. I said let's break that streak right now and let me hug you.  Well he did, he walked over to me like a mummy, he was stiff as a board, did not know what to do with his arms or how to relaxed his neck. But I hugged him like a black gramma smothering their grandchild for the first. I loved on him with all my grand mama might. He finally loosened up, put his arms around me and his head on my shoulders. I could feel oxytocin passing through my body to his. It was an inspiration moment for me and and him. I prayed that God would soak him with so much oxytocin that he could make it through school, even if I never saw him again.

I started out saying Oxytocin for everyone on Thanksgiving, that could easily be mistaken for Oxycodone for everyone on Thanksgiving. But the reason someone needs Oxycodone is they do not have enough Oxytocin in their lives. Oxytocin is a powerful hormone. It actually has been dubbed the Love hormone because when we hug or kiss a loved one, oxytocin levels drive up. This hormone is greatly stimulated during sex, when hugging, or petting an animal (that’s one reason that pets are so healing) can be released by a loving conversation. When someone shows they trust you oxytocin gets released and creates a bonding effect. My intent here is not to give a chemistry lesson but to share what an amazing gift God gave us. It does not cost anyone anything, it is naturally produced in the body and it is related to nothing but healthy normal activities that God intended us to take part in when he created us.

Oxytocin will trump oxycodone every time. What is more powerful than love? People do all kinds of things because of the lack of love. The lack of love is the driving force behind any addiction and that was one reason I was so concerned about this young man. He did not have a source of love being poured into his life, but only Jesus could fix that and He did. The internal need for love is the equivalent of the physical need for oxygen. Just as we can not live without oxygen, we can not live without love.

So this Thanksgiving, let us overdose on Oxytocin.  Let us hug and kiss on one another. Let us hug a stranger (I double dare you!), show affection, pet our animals, buy a turkey for someone less fortunate than yourself, invite others over for dinner, smile, laugh, show gratitude, forgive someone  and return to our original state of creation, LOVE.

A blessed Thanksgiving to all of you,


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