Weekends, for me, are a time to spend relaxing with family. It’s a time when we are all together for meals, and I cook special foods for my family and I to enjoy. Often we’ll play a game of cards after dinner or work on a puzzle together. In short, weekends at my house are like a holiday – food, family and a bit of fun.
My family is important to me, and as time has gone on and I’ve gotten older I’ve come to realize just how precious each moment spent with my family is – especially my older relatives who I don’t see as often as I should or as I’d like to.
These days I only have a few older relatives left. Most of them are gone now. The chance to visit with them, to hear their their stories, to get to know them better is gone forever. I’m left only with a few memories and photos. Or so I thought.
This past weekend I happened upon a stack of greeting cards that were kept together with a rubber band. It was a stack of cards I didn’t know I had.
As I tried to remove the rubber band it broke – after doing it’s job of holding all those cards together for 30 years!
I looked at the first card in the stack and quickly realized that these were cards given to me when I graduated high school – cards from family members long gone, and from old friends who I hadn’t seen in years.
I began reading the things people wrote to me in each card. Nice sentiments for a bright time in a young person’s life. And then I came upon a card from my grandmother who passed away last August. She only wrote a paragraph, but it moved me to tears. It was almost as if she were standing beside me, telling me again how much she believed in me, and how much she loved me. It was such a precious treasure to find!
But, a couple of cards further into the stack I found another treasure equally as precious. It was a card from my other grandmother – my paternal grandmother. I didn’t know her very well growing up as she lived 3,000 miles away from me. We had visited her only a handful of times when I was young. But, she always send cards for my birthdays, for holidays, and for my graduation. Where all those cards are today no one knows. But I now have one.
I eagerly opened the card hoping to find a message inside. But, there was only her signature. I though to myself, “Well, I don’t remember ever writing to her so I guess it’s only fair she wrote nothing to me.” And I closed the card.
But then, I flipped the card over to put it on top of the cards I had already looked at and there it was! Her sentiments to me! She had filled the entire back side of the card with words of care, and love, and a bit of sorrow at not being able to be at my graduation ceremony.
Oh what bliss! She had died 22 years ago, yet what she wrote to me in that card seemed fresh – I having forgotten it from so long ago when she first sent me the card.
And that’s when I realized that the most important writing any of us will ever do isn’t our booklets, books, blogs, or other projects. We do those things to help people and to make money and that’s good. We need to do those things. And they have their place, and they are important. But they aren’t the most important. No. That place of grandeur is reserved for something far more special – the cards and letters we give and send to our loved ones.
It’s mind blowing how much thought we’ll put into our booklets, books, and other products and how little thought we give to the writing that really matters most – the writing that will outlast us and be cherished by future generations – our sentiments for our loved ones.
Cards and letters are often kept and cherished by those who receive them – especially when you write something in them besides your signature.
If you’ve ever simply signed a card and sealed the envelope, write a little note inside next time.
And if you usually do write a little note, put a little more thought into it and make it a little longer next time.
You never know. Someday, long after you are gone, one of your loved ones may happen upon that very card and open it again longing to hear from you!
To your riches!
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My ebook, “Publish Outside The Box” is available here.