I have a beautiful story to share with you, and in exchange for reading it, I hope you’ll follow the instructions at the end. This isn’t a chain letter or a legal document… but hopefully I’ll talk you into it.
My Grandma outlived my Grandpa by many, many years. ‘Until Death’ parted them… She lived alone in the farmhouse they had shared for 49 years up until her health got bad enough that she shared a roof with my Mother. During those years, she was surrounded by local friends and family who visited her often.
I moved away from home when I graduated from college. I don’t regret that decision, but I did often miss holidays with family. Since I wasn’t there in person, I used to write to my Grandma. Probably not as often as she’d have liked, or as often as I should have, but I still did.
Specifically speaking today, I wrote to my Grandma on December 20, 1999 to fill her in on what we’d been up to, so that she would have a nice letter to go with her Christmas card. Aren’t I a good boy? I’ll sit on my hind haunches, smile a big hound dog grin, and wait for you to pat me on the head.
That letter was written akin to 15 years ago now. Consequently, I wrote that letter exactly 5 days before we learned of our first pregnancy, the boy who is now nearly 14 years old and named for my Grandpa. The history lesson matters, I promise!
I long ago forgot about that letter from December 20, 1999. I read it with great interest recently, when it found its way back to my home, and can see that I clearly enjoyed writing it. It contained lots of anecdotes, some I’d forgotten myself. There were the Legos I got for Christmas one year, and a slot car race track… those Legos are now mixed in with my son’s, and are still providing us with family fun more than 30 years after I tore the wrapping paper off of them under Grandma and Pappy’s Christmas tree.
Here’s the best part- my Grandma, in 1999 and 2001, wrote love notes TO me on that very letter, and tucked it away somewhere that my Mommy eventually found it while cleaning out old boxes of Nana’s stuff, and returned it to me. Just a few days ago. Almost 15 years, 2 kids, and 3 generations later.
It meant the world to her, my Grandma, to hear about all the wonderful memories I had of holidays at her home. To hear about all the memories I had of dinners with family and time spent on the farm with her and my Grandpa. It took only minutes of my time on December 20, 1999 to write that letter, yet it was something she enjoyed for the rest of her life.
And now today, it means the world to me to have that letter back with my Grandma’s love notes written on it in her handwriting, as well as my Mother’s explanation of how it all happened, now 6 years after Nana left us. Love notes from beyond the grave? It doesn’t get any better than that.
Stop what you’re doing right now and write to your Grandma and Grandpa. Please. Karma will smile upon you for it, and it will mean the world to your Nana and Pappy. I promise. Grandma and Grandpa, I’m talking to YOU too! Take those letters, write on them whatever comes to mind, sign and date them, and make sure they’re tucked away somewhere that they’ll make their way back to your Grandkids long after you’re gone. It’ll mean the world to your Grandkids. I promise.
Tonight, this will be our bedtime story, and I’m going to cap it off with a request that my own kids encourage their young to write to me as often as humanly possible. I don’t need to grow old to already know that I’ll cherish every single sentence, paragraph, and… letter.
Cheers from The www.ThreeFiveZero.com Some-Day-Grandpa