It really is no wonder why Nicholas Sparks seems to have reserved seating when it comes to the New York Times Best Seller Lists. The man has found a fruit that most cannot ignore and he wrings out the sweet juices in almost all of his books.
The art of letter writing.
Let’s be sincere. We love it. We adore it. We absolutely devour this idea of the soldier in his tent at night rereading the letters of his girl back home. Smelling Her Scent Between The Punctuation Points. We tear into a tub of chocolate ice cream as we sigh over the Two Lovers who forge communion in waiting for the post man to arrive.
A college professor of mine once told the class the tale of how she and her husband fell in love. They met one another at a time in their lives where Distance had a cunning plan to keep them apart. But, even being thousands of miles apart, they fell in love. Somewhere Between the Capital Letters and the Paragraph Breaks.
“It was really different during that time. You would spill your heart out onto a page, baring all your secrets and then you would drop it in the mail box,” I remember her saying. “The test was in the waiting. Waiting to see what he would say back, waiting to learn more about him with every letter in the mail.”
It is not just “mushy gushy” letters. It is any kind of letter where one sits down and dedicates the writing of words and syllables and sentiments with another in mind. I daresay, it is the most beautiful thing in the world.
It is knowing that someone, right next door or Miles Apart, will know themselves loved through just a few paragraphs and a signature at the bottom. Sincerely Yours.
If I have said it once then I need to say it ten more times: The world needs more love letters. More “Thank you for being alive today” letters. More “You are remarkable” and “You light up the world” letters. More “I think you will do great things” kind of letters.
***This is the part of the post where you take both of your hands and you place them on your forehead. Then you say out loud, “Oh no, Hannah. Where are you taking this?” Because, Lord knows, I never stop when idea comes into my head.***
Are you in position? Ok.
I am writing letters to people I have never met. Yes. I am finding it to be the best activity that I have ever taken up. A hobby, if you will call it, that delivers to me a smile every single time I place down a comma or a period.
It began on a train ride home from Manhattan, as most things usually do for me. I was feeling terribly lonely but almost comforted by the fact that everyone around me seemed terribly lonely as well. But instead of letting Loneliness trample all over commute, I pulled out my notepad and began composing a letter. To a person who I had never met. To a person who I can almost guarantee I will never meet.
It is a surreal feeling, to compose a letter to an individual that you have no ties to but at the same time you want the whole wide world for them. I wished them a bright day. A day full of laughter. I told them they were unique & special & really quite smashing. (I might not have used the word ‘smashing’ but I probably will in the next letter).
Really, we are not told enough, in a genuine noncommercial manner, how brilliant we are. How intriguing and wonderful we are. How much we should be commended for waking up today and deciding to take on the task of being human. It is not an easy task. It is not always fun. But it is wildly worth it. Better that we write all these things down.
And, with an anonymous signature, I left the letter behind on the subway. And on the sink of a bathroom. And on a table in a coffee shop. And scattered all over the place in NYC. Several anonymous love letters. The beginnings to many….
I have always wanted to live my life as a love letter. Why not do it with actual love letters? Who knows where my letters are right at this very moment. If they are sitting in the hands of some of corporate CEO as he sips his morning latte at his favorite coffee shop. Or if one is sitting on the desk of a woman who cleans that same coffee shop every single day to keep her children enrolled in private school. It makes no difference, I just wish for the individuals of this world to know themselves loved. And that means you. Yes, you.
So here is the deal…. If you send me your address, your legitimate “oh my goodness, I have to label an envelope” address then I will write you a letter. You will receive a genuine, handwritten, love letter in the mail. I promise you this. (Don’t worry: I am not about to get creepy lovey dovey all over the paper).
Either leave your address below or via email: HannahKaty@live.com
My poor little fingers might regret this promise when they find themselves cramped from all sorts of cursive, but even if I don’t know you that well, I think you are quite worth it.