OTRA concludes in Sheffield with a dance and a hug

It’s been said by a family therapist – regarding hugs – that “We need 4 hugs a day for survival, 8 for maintenance, and 12 for growth”.  Now if you don’t get 4 hugs a day are you really heading to an early grave?  Not exactly, but a hug from someone you love is more important than you might realize.

The boys of One Direction said goodbye to their On The Road Again Tour last night in Sheffield.  The tour spanned a number of months, continents, and a held the turning point for the most extensive change Harry, Louis, Niall, and Liam have experienced thus far – becoming a four piece.  Some days it seemed like OTRA would never end, other days it seemed like it was speeding past fans so fast that they couldn’t hold on to it – and last night – it ended.

Louis, Harry, Liam, and Niall are officially done with the last tour that we’ll see from them for a number of months as the lads take holiday, experiment with different dreams and hopes, and explore parts of themselves that they haven’t been able to properly know since they’ve been on tour or in the studio for the last five years.

This is a big step for them, we gave you an article last night saying “See you soon” to the lads and thanking them for everything they’ve given fans over the years, for every piece of hope and love they sent out.  We’ve tried at CelebMix to publish pieces that negate false statements made against the lads, that show the boys in a good light; to show the sides of them that the media often forgets, and to remind not just fans, but the public, that they’re a lot more than a cash cow group of lads worried about their rise to fame.

What most people outside the One Direction fan base have seen lately, are articles that speak against that positivity, it seems that the closer to a break we get – the more you see Louis, Liam, Niall, and Harry shown in a negative light.  They’ve all had roles to play through the entirety of this time they’ve spent together and now that those roles are about to be nothing but written ideas on paper and the pockets of these writers will be less full, they’re doing as much writing as they can to slander the names and the images of these four lovely young men.

What those writers cannot do, however, is take away what is seen so clearly by anyone who has a heart and sees Liam, Niall, Louis, and Harry for what they truly are.

They can’t take away the bond they’ve built, they can’t take away their promises to return, and they can’t take away love.  They can just try to misrepresent it.

You’ve seen it all – from “A deep rift between Louis and Harry will cause the imminent death of One Direction” to “Harry can’t stand the rest of the lads so much that he does everything he can by himself”.  You’ve even recently seen a man who writes ‘pieces’ for The Sun say an “insider” (these unnamed sources sure have a lot to say these days) from a ‘big music corporation’ said that people agree that Louis is “a little sh*t” and he gets coddled and gets what he wants only to avoid a blow out”.

This guy?  This Louis Tomlinson?

We think not.

We do think that what we’ve seen from the boys, the people they’re close with, and anyone who goes against the grain to stand up for them instead of staying silent and giving into vicious personal vendetta fed rumors is a strong sense of togetherness right before they take their hiatus.

They’ve spoken of their desires to spend time alone, without alarms set, drinking pints, relaxing, and just finding themselves again but they’ve also spoken of their desires to spend time together, to continue writing, to visit the business aspect of the music industry a bit and there’s that whole lad holiday Louis can’t stop talking about.

These are the things the boys want us to listen to – so these are the things we’re going to listen to.  With a band like One Direction and a group like Niall, Liam, Harry, and Louis – we’ve learnt over the years, just as they have – that words can be superficial.  So in times where words seem to carry more negativity than positivity and more fallacy than truth – they show us without words what the truth is.

They show us moments like this.

They let us know it’s going to be okay.

It’s not just the lads who are showing it either – there are people speaking out on their behalf in light of the recent flood of articles that say there is nothing left but disdain between Harry and Louis specifically and a fizzled relationship between the four of them all together.  They have friends and business partners and even people they aren’t all that close to speaking against these ‘writers’ who claim to know inside information and what are they doing?  They’re challenging it and they’re winning.

Ben Winston flew from LA to Sheffield to catch the last OTRA date and made a public gesture on twitter to let someone who thought he knew it all see a bit of the truth that he witnessed in person.

https://twitter.com/benwinston/status/660638996159143936

Soon after this twitter exchange Ben posted that he was, in fact, blocked by Dan.  It seems that when the fire in the kitchen starts to burn, people who claim to have the fire extinguisher run instead of using their ammo to put it out.

Sort of makes it seem like there’s not much ammo after all, doesn’t it?

Last night, during OTRA’s final show, we saw who has the ammo, who has the truth, and who knows that no matter what media spin gets put on their words, what arrangement is made of them that shows a side opposite of what they meant in the first place – that we trust them, we know them, and we love them – the same as they do us.

We saw friends come together on stage with strong emotion, with love and also a sense of longing – wondering when this will be theirs again, and we saw bonds that we’ve seen evolve and some we’ve seen be stopped over the last five years be shown again.

We saw Liam and Louis hug for a long time, enjoying the friendship that’s grown stronger especially over the last few months.  We saw Louis squeeze Niall and rub his thumb over his lower back in a soothing gesture.

We saw Liam and Harry embrace – like brothers who’ve always looked out for one another.  We saw Harry and Niall hug like the close lads they’ve become – like two people who have shared stories and comfort in ways we won’t ever understand.

We saw Louis and Harry embrace the way that they used to, with Harry slamming his body forward into Louis’ like he has to be as close as physically possible for things to make sense.  We saw them close their eyes – trying to take the moment in and cementing it to memory immediately so it would be theirs forever.  We saw two people who have been told not to whisper on stage, who’ve been separated in interviews and signings, who’ve been told that their interactions were wrong and to put a stop to them…we saw them thrive last night.

That is the reason the Louis and Harry hug was so important – in a time where we’ve seen a flood of ‘pieces of writing’ that speak their hate and disdain for one another – they again used their bodies to show us that there is no truth to the rumors, even if they can’t say it out loud yet.

Yet.

Promo season is upon us, we are less than two weeks from the new album, less than two months from their last official appearance as of now, and then the boys get to take a break, the people who write pieces full of lies and slander will run out of things to talk about, and we’ll get only glimpses into the lives they’re leading out of the spotlight; but fear not, the boys will miss us as much as we miss them.  There’s no way they wont take to social media occasionally to check in, to post photos of the fun times they’re embracing off stage, out of the studio, and we’ll see all of them get to be somewhere they haven’t been for over five years.

We’ll see them – at home.

And for Harry and Louis; we know where home is.

And we’re sure there will be more than 12 hugs a day there.

Written by Ashley

Writer, coffee drinker, mother.