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The Sunday Post: Old-fashioned correspondence

I used to do it all the time. Sometimes even with people I’d never met before. I wrote letters to my grandmother, pen pals in other countries, and I’ve sent fan mail to my celebrity crushes back in my teenage days. I sent letters home when I was in college on personalized stationery, and then after I married I wrote an occasional letter to my parents. As my job and children took up more of my time, I lost the habit. Then along came the Internet and email, cell phones and texting. Sending something by postal mail became archaic (snail mail!).

A few years ago I bought myself a fresh box of pretty stationery and made myself a list of friends and family I wanted to correspond with, some of them for the first time. I wrote a handful of letters and got a couple back. I wrote a few more. I enjoyed writing the letters, but when I didn’t always hear back I was disappointed. I realized of course that not everyone was on the same mission or had the same communication goals. My pen pals had other things to do and quite possibly did not enjoy writing letters the same way I did. Eventually I lost the habit again.

I wrote a while back about starting a bullet journal. I’ve been using it for about six months now and in July I added a Morning Pages journal to my daily routine. That’s quite a bit of writing. I’ve found that I enjoy the quiet moments reflecting, brainstorming, and often times just brain dumping jumbled thoughts into my notebook.

This week I decided it was time to add letter-writing to the mix, to give it another shot and not worry too much about whether I get anyone to write back. I wrote three letters today. Since I hope to make it a long-term habit, I also added a correspondence tracker to my bullet journal. I don’t think I’ll write three letters in one day too often, but I hope to get one or two out every week. Hopefully I will have a few surprises in my own mailbox over the coming weeks, but I’m prepared for the very possible reality that the only mail our carrier will deliver is bills and junk mail.

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