When was the last time you wrote a handwritten letter? I am really bad at this and always have been. This is why I love the Internet so much. I’m a really good “email” person. If anyone writes to me, I always write back and usually pretty much right away. I have a few email relationships with people. Some I’ve met, others, not in real life. Are the ones I’ve met anymore important than the ones I haven’t? No, not at all. To me, everyone is important.
The only person I was very “strict” with myself with as far as always writing back to was my grandma. She’s really the only one I would make myself sit down and write to. We did talk on the phone often as her and my grandpa got older but to them, the phone was to expensive. It’s just the way it was then so letters were always going back and forth. Others have written to me in the past and sadly, I just couldn’t always make myself write back. I felt horribly guilty at the time and I would so often start letters and would never finish and by the time I thought about it, I’d just start over and so the cycle continued. I sometimes find these half written letters in notebooks I’ve put away and laugh and remember that time in my life.
I got this last Thursday and I just can’t tell you how much it meant to me.
I guess you all noticed it’s from South Africa. Hhhmmm…I wonder who it’s from?? Yes it’s from our dear Audrey (Sanityfound). I normally don’t look through the mail at all. My husband does it. He puts my magazines in one pile and all “his” stuff (bills!!) in the other. There really isn’t much personal mail that comes anymore. I get almost all of mine online.
Imagine my surprise when he said “this must be from your friend in South Africa.” I about crapped and grabbed it and really did jump up and down like a child. I was so happy to get that personal touch from Audrey. She’s REALLY real. Well, duh!!! How corny does that sound???
I think this should be a really good reminder to us that our online friends are real people. They are living and breathing and have feelings and emotions and lives of their own. Do you ever find yourself maybe saying something to someone that maybe you shouldn’t? I know I’ve been very guilty of “stirring the pot” on blogs. Not so much on personal ones but the great big commercial ones. Still and all, people are real.
I’m mostly talking about the writers of blogs. I do feel there are “plants” on blogs and I do think some people are just plain rude and mean but I sometimes wonder if they just say and do some of the things they do to “get a rise” out of people or just on purpose to start blog wars. I know there have been times I just couldn’t seem to help myself and I’ve said things to people I shouldn’t have. You know, those times you were mad because the dog puked all over the place or you had a headache or your spouse ticked you off and you took it out on someone who had nothing to do with anything. You just said something stupid because you were in a pissy mood.
Let’s try and remember that we all are real live people and we all have feelings. This handwritten post card from Audrey put things into better perspective for me and I’m going to try harder to be nice and think of people that way.
Thanks Sanity. You get all the cookies today 😉
Just beautiful Joy…. isn’t it amazing something as small as a postcard can light up someone’s heart like that? A few kind words and some love? Wow.
Thank God for our Audrey. She keeps us all happily insane!
I really am so touched and feel it within my heart that you liked that postcard so much and more importantly that you could READ it – my handwriting is so odd!
Ambz dahlink are you admitting once more that you are insane and Joy are you seriarse? I get cookies? *grins big*
Thank you for this and what you say, your words couldn’t be truer! Thanks for the love!
PS Did you jump up and down like a kiddie? You gone and made my day – when I wrote the above comment I was still asleep tsk We loves you Joy, all my personalities and me!
Since just after college, my best friend and I have spent more time living in different states – far away from each other. First, I was in Texas, then shortly after I moved back to the Midwest, she took off after her dream and now breeds huskies and lives on the Iditarod Trail in Alaska.
We call each other about once a week, but often, I’ll sit down at my computer (because I think faster than I can write – I have a fighting chance with the keyboard), and write a good, long, stream-of-consciousness letter to her. They’re often funny, always heartfelt and full of love, and I decorate them with pictures of my son, my animals, and random stuff I find on the Internet. I also decorate it with crayons, markers or whatever else I have handy.
In return, she sends me drawings and photos of her 21(!) dogs. She’s a phenomenal artist, and her love for her dogs comes through in every drawing, both “straight” and comic.
It’s wonderful fun, because we never know when the other has sent a “care package”, and it makes that long walk to the mailbox just a little more fun.
I used to write my grandmother every month. She passed away last March at the age of 89. She kept every single letter that I wrote to her from the time I was able to hold a crayon right up till the last letter I got to write.
I still write handwritten letters to my best friend. But I prefer e-mail myself. Mainly because I hate my handwriting!
I don’t think I have said anything that I shouldn’t and if I ever have or do I hope someone calls me on it!
Writing emails are not very personal. It is very convenient but not personal.
When you get something via the mail box it is very personal and lends it self to greater authority.
I don’t remember the last time I hand wrote a letter but I do remember when I was in Navy boot camp I wrote my mom a seventeen page letter. She cried and actually carried it around in her purse for a couple of yearsl.
I think maybe that she liked to just reread it ever so often… or maybe it was a better read then the outdated Home and Garden magazine the doctors’ offices has.
I haven’t been in the habit of writing letters since I was a teen. I remember how lovely it was to get a new box of stationery and I’d write to my cousin and anyone else whom I didn’t see often. When I moved at age 12 I kept up correspondence for a while with my best friend, and later another good friend who had moved away. At some point we just stopped corresponding and I don’t think I’ve written a letter just for the sake of it since then. At least, not that I remember.
I love email. It helps me to get back to that level of sharing. I’m not sure why, but I am a lot more reliable about email than any other mode of communication, including telephone and meeting in person. With so many friends living far away, it’s great to be able to keep up with each other in this way.
I am a weird writer. Since I was a kid, I always felt the need to re-write everything until it was good enough. (I do less of that as I get older.) Between that and the hassle of envelopes, stamps, addresses (what with people moving all the time), etc., I am just too lazy to send a physical letter. I know it would probably be nicer if I did. But on the flip side, nobody writes to me that way, either. Even when I used to write, I would not get back as many letters as I sent, and they often contained only brief comments. So I feel most people I know are just as happy not getting letters from me.
I have one friend who doesn’t have email. She’s my age and has a regular job that uses the computer, so I can hardly believe it. Her mom died last year and she was her best friend, so I said, let’s keep in touch and get together sometimes – send me your email address. She sent me a card saying let’s talk on the phone, since she doesn’t have email. Well, it’s been a year now, and I haven’t called her. Why? I know it’s bad of me. But I am not that comfortable on the phone. I mean, I don’t have anything in particular to say, and I never feel like the other person “really” wants to talk to me – that’s just my personality. I don’t have any good “excuse” to call, so I have just been putting it off. I wish my friend would get email! I know, 20 years ago, that would be the most idiotic statement, but that’s where I am today.
As for online friends and others, I agree that it’s easy to forget that these are real people. I try to remember, but I have been guilty of a few “low blows” – usually in retaliation. Sometimes I go back and realize that I had taken something the wrong way and lashed out unnecessarily. Of course, I’ve been on the receiving end plenty of times, too. I usually don’t care what an anonymous meanie says, unless they seem likely to influence others. Silence can be read as agreement – if nobody disagrees, it must be true. (At my age, few people form their opinions that way, but young people might.) Of course, I have good friends who hold some of the same beliefs that I “bash” online, and I would never “bash” my friends. So clearly I have a way to go in improving my online etiquette and understanding.
I haven’t written a letter in years. Although no one writes to me so we’re even. But I’m sure my sisters or my mom would love a little note here and there. So maybe I’ll sit down and write a few. I just hope they don’t end up sitting in my car forever because I will for forget to go to the post office and by the time I do the letters will be so old I’ll have to rewrite them(that vicious little cycle Joy’s talking about. As for saying something mean b/c you are in a pissy mood. I think it’s unnecessary but can see how it could happen. I think hard about my comments if I know it’s going to be somewhat controversial. I hate the the way I feel inside if I hurt someones feelings. I think if EVERYONE in this world would stop and think about how it may effect someone else it may be a better world. I think too many people pride themselves on being honest actually brutally honest. What about priding yourself on thinking about others? I know a lot of us wouldn’t hurt a fly(okay maybe a fly) but when we’re on the computer we feel kind of invincible. Great post Joy, and yes it really does put it into perspective.
I haven’t written a letter in awhile. The last one was to the gardening club I’m in and it was not very nice! I used to have a penpal in MO and it was so much fun to get a letter in the mail, but that was back when it was cheap to send a letter! Now, it’s much easier to send an e-mail.
Oh, the postcard reminds me of a joke I got the other day!
A child in kindergarden, who was just learning how to read, was looking at a book during free time. The child shouts out, “oh, this book has a freakin’ elephant!”. The teacher rushes over to scold the child for their language, but when she looks at the page she sees the picture and the words: African Elephant!!!!
I laughed out loud at this. Hooked on phonics worked for me!
I have a problem doing hand written letters and I have a problem even E-mailing people back. when I get online its usually to look something up and i get tired of that so I’m very on and off when it comes to the internet.
Hey Joy! Just checking in. I hope all is well.I got a new cell and lost your email addy. Please send it again.
Good to hear from you Tosha. I’ll send something to you now.
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