My Grandmother is 92 years old. On a recent visit with Grandma, she presented a letter, written 26 years ago, by me to her and Grand Dad. The letter was in it’s original envelope and it had a postmark dated November 1984. The upper left hand corner of the envelope was my resident address during the year of 1984 and her current address. I was tempted to smell the envelop, but resisted as I couldn’t explain the urge. As I savored the excitement and anticipation of contents of the letter, I slowly slipped the letter out of the evelop. The letter was four pages long front and back. The letter was handwritten on lavender colored stationary. Back then, lavender was my favorite color. I did not detect a fragrance, but the date and penmanship placed me at the exact place and moment of time long ago.
The conversation spoke of the thrill of independence, demands of a career, the challenges of managing life and settling into my new residence in NYC.
In the letter, I expressed thankfulness and humility for my grandparent’s love and care, and a longing to spend the holidays together. As I read the letter, I couldn’t hold back my emotions as the letter painted a picture of my life 26 years ago. I could no longer hear my voice reading aloud, as the rapid beat of my heart became my voice. I stopped reading the letter aloud and glanced up at Grandma who was also filled with emotion. We took a moment to embrace and compose ourselves without speaking a word.
Grandma kept and cherished every letter I wrote. She may have read my letters a hundred times over. After twenty six years, she decided to share it with me.
Grandma does not have a computer and has never emailed anyone. She patiently awaits my telephone calls as, I have long stopped writing letters. However, I made a mental note and wrote an electronic “To Do” to start writing my Grandmother again. Perhaps I will start today.