I love technology. I love how I can control our thermostat from my phone. I love how I can crank my vehicle remotely. I love how I can ask Alexa what the weather is in Cozumel is today while I make preparations for below freezing temperatures sliding this way tonight.
She can send texts, emails and order Christmas cards and stamps. But no matter how much I beg her, Alexa can’t write Christmas cards.
She can’t have weird handwriting. She can’t misspell things and just leave them alone knowing that the receiver will see that and probably laugh. Alexa can’t accidentally put a Christmas stamp on upside down. Alexa can’t spill out thoughts and feelings on the cardstock because Alexa doesn’t feel.
My wife always takes care of our mailed out Christmas cards. This morning I went to get some stamps and finish off a couple of cards. Alone in the house, listening to Christmas music and drinking coffee it was fun and sort of a ‘connection’ to sit for a few minutes and drop these people a personal note.
My mother always took time to Scotch tape the Christmas cards onto the door facings in our home growing up. And some years there would be so many that we’d have to tape them to the brown paneling beside the door facing.
It’s part of aging, I believe. Because upstairs in our attic are untold cards that we’ve kept from our past 34 years together. Cards with handwritten messages and signatures not from an email, but from real people who had real hearts and real hands that loved us enough to sit down and write on a card, stamp it and mail it. We kept the ‘connections’. Sometimes, I have kept them only for the handwriting because I knew these people were elderly and would be gone way too soon. So to have that little remembrance of their efforts would be greatly appreciated.
And it is.
So, this Christmas 2017, don’t miss the opportunity that you have to sit down and write something for the people who you love. Just a few lines. Don’t let the age-old tradition die away because we get ‘busy’ or it’s ‘old fashioned’. Because in this very busy world, we will always need to stay connected not only by internet.
But also by interhuman.
Give your friends and family something; let them see your handwriting/printing, to make their holiday special and I promise it’ll make you feel good to do something that is not on a keyboard or screen.
In this case, it will be a hard choice between what feels better;
to give or to receive.
That’s the best that I can tell about it.
Last Christmas, I hand wrote an original poem, onto a card, and mailed it to a friend. If she was impressed, I never knew. She did not say. But, the important matter is, I had a blast composing and writing the piece. It made me all kinds of happy… The joy of the gift is in the giving.
I have many cards put away, from years gone by. I cherish them. You hit on something tangible here, and meaningful, and hopefully, timeless. Thanks for bringing it all into focus today, Mark.
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Your term “interhuman” should be entered into today’s dictionary !!! If we only correspond by internet or texting, we will soon lose all our feelings for one another or humanity. The human voice and its warmth , a smile or a hug can mean so much to those who have no one or see friends or family rarely. Those old photographs that a lot of us like to look at and remember will also be gone also as most photos today are lost on “smart” phones never to bee seen again or by future generations.
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