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Picking up a pen


With Valentine’s Day approaching, I pondered about how individuals communicate, interact and show their care and love for one another.

As I glance at my daily surroundings, I see more people entertaining themselves and wrapping up their lives with the consumption of smartphones and electronic devices rather than engaging with neighbors. These captivating devices are causing some to look away from the personal and most important interactions that occur in our lives.

And yes, I’m guilty of this as well.

After coming to this realization, I decided to step out of my comfort zone and try something new while lightly tossing my phone on my bed.

I began to fill a jar full of snippets of paper with written names of friends, family, coworkers, community group members and those who I have met in the past week.

As each day passed, I removed one piece of paper from the jar, grabbed a pen, paper and envelope and took a seat to write a letter to each chosen individual.

My first thought of this idea was, “Should I have been born in an earlier generation?” Having a desire to communicate through mail is one for the books for a 24-year-old.

But now I wonder, where has the aspiration of writing to others “just because” left to?

In this very office, one person wrote a personal letter one month ago while another hasn’t sent a letter in more than 20 years.

Although I have a natural tendency to journal and write things down, writing letters is different and can be considered some sort of a challenge. It takes valued thought, decent handwriting and the ability to approach writing in a personable and engaging manner.

This form of communication is treasured and is a personal keepsake and affirmation that someone is cared for. The importance of making those around me feel loved has definitely been brought to my attention.

My spontaneity challenged me to not only let go of my social media consumption, but to simply have the appreciation and value of what I’ve been given. Through this experience, I was able to take a step back and allow myself to live in the moment of my surroundings and have a true sense and appreciation for the people that have been placed in my life.

The beauty of writing letters, besides adding my own personal touch, is creating a simple message. The stories and letters I have sent will always have sentimental value and will be treasured today, tomorrow and forever.

I’m encouraged to continue to put my pen to paper and share my appreciation of others and celebrate recent occasions through mail. I would rather spend the extra time, effort and 46 cents to show someone the love that every person deserves. May this encourage you to do the same!