I had a friend send me a letter today. It was a friend I haven’t seen in a long time. The beautiful thing about the letter is it was totally impromptu – a friend who said she literally just thought of me while she was going over her things to be thankful for. It made me start to think about the people in my life that I had not thought about in a long time and I was motivated to send off some letters today. It’s like when I was a little kid and someone sent me mail, it was amazing! My mom would look at me with a big smile and say “Mail came for you”. It could have been from Columbia House (which I did get for a year – despite the rip off that it was, I had an awesome record collection.) and I would have beamed from ear to ear. But for awhile I had a couple of pen pals from around the world and the correspondence was magical. Hand written, honest and earnest communication. Even as I write this I think of how much I miss that. Email has taken over the time when we had to sit down and really think out our thoughts. I remember trying to use my best cursive writing and finding really cool stamps to end the letters off. It was kind of an event to write a letter and it was definitely an event to get one. When I was pregnant with my first son – young and alone in the big city, my grandma used to Fed Ex a small something every week until he was born – baby socks, a bib, belly cream, lip gloss and on and on. It changed everything for me. I was never so grateful to see someone as the Fed Ex guy though I think he got tired of seeing me. I sure miss my Grandma at the holidays now. It reminded me how after she passed, she left her old antique books to me. When I picked the first one up, I found a post it note inside that said, “made me think of my grand daughter Brandi” beside a passage. It turns out, she had put a whole bunch of post it notes through the years addressed to me that I got to read after she was gone. To see her handwriting again, to revel in the moments we spent looking at books together, there is no email in the world that could have duplicated that.
The point? Write a letter to someone. Why not? Don’t wait for Thanksgiving or Christmas, write it on any old day to someone you care about, someone who did something for you once upon a time. Imagine what it might feel like for them to open it up and read it. That’s the feeling of thanks and giving.
To all my people – I’m on a mission to get some handwritten letters out to you all. Forgive the cursive…it’s not what it used to be : ) And Happy Thanksgiving to all of you.