Forward A Friendly Message
“You’ve got mail!” As a second grade little girl, I froliced in the playground with my best friends and awaited the day when I would get mail. In fact, every time I heard these words from my teacher, Mrs. Nelson, I leaped for joy knowing that I had received mail from someone special. Even now, getting the smallest note by mail makes me happy because I realize how I am progressively growing up and managing my life on my own.
As a seven year old I was anxious to discover what lurked inside the envelope, which gave me butterflies every other thursday my classmates and I got our letters. My teacher had a tradition of helping her new second grade class every year interact with other students through the use of writing letters. Her goal was for us to both improve our writing skills in a creative way and learn to write letters for future references. Thus, every year she changed the location of where her students would send the letters to and receive by other students.
For my year, I had the opportunity of writing letters to second grade kids from an elementary school in Colorado. I clearly remember how every letter was hand made, each with a picture that symbolized how we had felt during that week. I use to only use my light pink lined paper for this occasion; and as I took a moment to review what I had written on each letter I noticed how curvy my writing was and the way my “r’s” looked more like a fountain than an actual alphabetical letter. I also remember that I had special glittery stickers of butterflies, which were given to me by my grandma for my sixth birthday; they were precious to me and I only used them to seal the envelope that my teacher sended to the other kids.
My Colorado friend was named Trinity Smith; she was super sweet in her writing and for the two in a half months that we wrote to one another I felt that she was not only a distance friend, but a sister, that I could talk to for loads of lined paper to. We had a lot in common, from both being part of a dance team of ballet and hip-hop, to being the middle child, and to loving to spend quality time with family. As we forwarded messages back and forth, I awaited the day when I would open her letter and see what interesting things she had done throughout the week.
One time she even introduced me to a delicious snack that I would have never thought of eating, but now desire it all the time. They are mini ritz sandwich cookies, filled with crunchy peanut butter and marshmallow spread with a side of sliced green apples. They are absolutely yummy and the apples give it a great compliment by providing the sandwiches with a burst of juicy flavor. She also taught me how to prepare baked goods that she made with her family. I use bake them every year during Thanksgiving and Christmas time. Trinity called them, Pink Pixie Dust cookies because she was fascinated with the color pink, as I was too, and everything that had to do with Tinkerbell. They are pink colored sugar cookies topped with whip cream and rainbow sprinkles, which she called pixie dust. Yum, Yum, Yum! (:
On the other hand, I taught Trinity how to braid, which was my all time favorite hair style that I made every morning before going to school. Although it was kinda hard to teach her through words instead of face to face, I managed to express myself explicitly and make detailed explanations in my writing. It also helped that she would send me pictures on how she progressed on her braiding skills. Towards the end of our letters, she even learned to do a fish braid, which at our age was seen as impossible.
We talked about our family traditions, what we loved about school, who we wanted to become in the future, who our crush was, our favorite dinner, and much more. No matter what we talked about, I felt as though I was actually talking to Trinity face to face and not just with words on a lined paper. It was like I would pour all my thoughts and emotions on this little paper to have Trinity help me solve a problem or simply make my day that much brighter.
Among all the friendly letters Trinity and I passed, the one that I was fascinated by was the time I received a picture of how Trinity looked and she received one from me. This joyful moment was similar to the the time I obtained my first Taylor Swift’s CD for Christmas, after writing a letter to Santa Claus. In fact, up to the point when I continued to believe in Santa Claus, I was fascinated with writing letters to a chubby old man with cherry rose cheeks, a fluffy white beard, and a round belly that bounced with every step he took.
Additionally, once the end of the year came, I became melancholy because Trinity and I would lose contact with one another, but I was happy to know that I had built a close friend over the course of letters. The last thing we sent to one another were friendship bracelets, each with our names beaded on each others so we would never forget one another.
In the long run, I realized that I could continue to send Trinity letters despite the year being over. Thus, our voyage towards friendship continued to grow, until she moved schools and I never got the chance to write to her again let alone meet her in person. However, I was thankful for all the times I had got the opportunity to talk to her and build a close relationship with someone over 1,117.4 miles away from where I lived.
This experience was one that I would definitely want to repeat and hope to repeat with my own kids in the future. I not only got the chance to meet a new person over letters, but I learned to write formal letters and appreciate how much I could express through writing. Even now I think handwriting a letter and sealing it personally is more touching and meaningful than typing a quick email.
Thus, when I found out that for my AP English class we would be creating small postcards in relation to the novel 1984 by George Orwell, I became overjoyed. Although it is more complicated because we need to search for phrases that enlighten the role of Big Brother and the Thought Police by writing out quotes and crossing those that go against Big Brother, in order to reveal a secret code, it still brings me back to the time I wrote letters with Trinity in second grade.
At the end of the day, I would encourage each and everyone one of you guys to write a personal letter to someone close to you, such as your best friend, a teacher, or even a your grandma that lives a few miles away from you. Trust me this will illuminate their day with happiness knowning that you took the time to write a handwritten letter just for them. It would also be nice if you could write a letter to a child at the hospital or even someone you don’t know personally, but know that they are going through a rough time! (:
Quote: “I am a little pencil in the hand of a writing God who is sending a love letter to the world.” -Unknown Teresa