Dear Old Love Letters,

Dear Old Love Letters,

I found you, in the bottom of the big old box. There you were, tucked away safely, all this time. You have stayed so true, so loyal over all these last thirty years. You have not seen the light of day nor felt the warmth of hand to open you and turn your sweet pages.  Thank you for your patience, and knowing, that perhaps now was the perfect time to find you. Read you. Rediscover you. 

As life brings closure on a significant chapter of life, you bring me back, so sweetly and innocently, to the one that began the history of them all. The first.

postage

It’s been thirty years since you were penned and mailed, with a stamp that cost twenty cents. It’s been thirty years since your words have been read and savored. Thirty years since feeling that flutter of happiness upon seeing the yellow envelope on my dresser when I got home from school.

You were written for a sixteen year old girl, and you were written long before you could ever know that letting those words flow freely from your yet unbruised heart would begin the first of all bruises yet to follow. Your wordy news and little updates of seemingly mundane moments pre-date any form of text messaging that today, would surely consume hours of our days. Every little detail, so important.

Your sweet innocence and vulnerability is almost too much…

“My mind is on other things, so I decided to write to that one other thing – you!”

Your uninhibited words play across the pages – the slightly sappy, but so very endearing Snoopy stationery, chosen by your author – in your own unique way; you convey his heart, his thoughts, his cute little sighs.  You reveal a heart as yet unbroken. You tell me that I am missed, appreciated, and while the word graces not the page, in between the lines it’s there. A naive first love.

To find you now is perfect really. A time of re-calibration. A time of reflection. A time of being intentional. A time of new direction. It’s like you knew, that you waited for me somehow.  You remind me what is possible. You remind me that the heart is beautiful, resilient and wise. And that the telling of one’s heart is in fact an act of courage.

“I’m sure extra glad that things are working out with your parents about me. If I come up to visit, I’ll probably get real nervous and blow it though. So, they said it’s ok to come up and visit and stuff? Well, I’m interested in the stuff 🙂 “

Letters, you are a landmark of sorts; a familiar, even if so very vague, place worth remembering, perhaps keeping an eye out for.  I would like to somehow convey to your author  – the sweet boy who was brave enough to pen his heart on your pages for me, for to be so transparent is truly an act of bravery – how grateful I am. That he owns a corner of my heart. Always. How could he not?

“I sure had a super great time on Sat. Thanks! We didn’t do much, but it didn’t matter. Just being with you made it worth it.”

Letters, sweet old letters, thank you for staying safely tucked away and finding me again all these years later.  I grin and blush just thinking about you and feel almost sixteen again.  I am comforted by your presence, for the 16 year old girl then, and the woman now old enough to be her mother.  Like muscle memory, our hearts have a memory too. It is good.

Love,
Bonnie

______________________

*These letters are real, and were from my first boyfriend when I was 16 yrs old and he 19.  We met while working together at a summer camp. I attended his wedding years later and we danced together, talking and sharing, knowing we’d always think fondly of the other. While I congratulated him on his big day, and said I wished he and his bride so much joy,  I told him I still had his letters. He said he still had mine.  

I could tell you what happened or who broke who’s heart, but when a first love ends, isn’t it both hearts that twist and crumple, never to be quite the same ever again?

How the story ended is not so important as remembering the sheer openness and accessibility. Every girl should be so lucky to have letters so sweet and that remind her that she’s been cherished in the eyes of another. 

Advertisements

Love Letter

Dear Writing,

I am writing this note to say that I miss you. I miss you dearly.  It seems that lately, I haven’t been able to spend much quality  or one-on-one time with you. I think of you so often, all the time really, you must know. Thoughts of you chase around in my mind – like jungle monkeys, vine to vine – and come and go and I get that little flutter of excitement. Yes, you still give me the butterflies.

We both know we are still courting, and getting to know one another, and it may seem that I am being neglectful of your needs and not showing you how much I appreciate you in my life, and how there is no one else quite like you. You get me, you understand me. You listen. You are always there for me, waiting so patiently. I must be clear and share that thoughts of you are never far from my mind. Not a day goes by that I don’t imagine long leisurely moments together, just luxuriating over each word and phrase. When we get down to commas and semi-colons my heart goes pitter-patter. Oh dear, I fear I have made you blush. 

typewriter

This is not to say that at times we won’t always see eye to eye, but I feel confident in our relationship. I have had my eye on you for quite some time now; I was always just so shy to show my affection and interest, for fear it might not be reciprocated.

So, while I carry on and attend to the more mundane tasks that seem to endlessly present themselves for my attention, you must remember that you are the object of my affection and to measure my affection not by keystrokes, but by thoughts.

Affectionately and adoringly yours,

Bonnie

Not All At Once

Hi Kiddo,
{a letter to my son}

In the last week you have revealed to me so  many new corners of your character, and you simply amaze me.  You got some news that had to be the hardest thing you have encountered in your short but full nine and half years.  It breaks my heart to be the bearer of any news that interrupts your otherwise perfectly placed focus on MineCraft, Soccer, pitching for your little league team, mastering the kendama,  and of course chasing the dog around the backyard.  Someday, all of this will make much more sense  to you.  Maybe you will even see how it is in a crazy way even better for you.

For now, though, I wish I could really tell you how impressed I am with you, how in awe I am of your bravery, your determination to be a big boy. Your willingness to not only bend with and lean into this change, but that you can find some upsides so readily.

I can see the ripples of fear creeping up around your edges from time to time, and yet you somehow find a way to rise above it and knock it down, almost like your own version of emotional whack-a-mole.  That, Bug, is true courage.  If you only knew.

The questions you ask me are far more insightful than some conversations I have had with adults; you find the crux of it all more succinctly than I ever would have.  You face your fears and ask me the questions anyway, even though I bet you somehow know that you are not going to like the answer, or know that at least you will not totally understand it.  I don’t like ambiguity now, decades ahead of you; you somehow are able to roll with this ambiguity with no ambivalence.

I wish I had had what you somehow have in abundance when I was nine and a half. If I did, perhaps you wouldn’t have to.

When I pushed too hard, trying to help you, comfort you, I could hardly comprehend how you knew what you needed and even more, that you knew exactly how to ask me for it. With an analogy. “Mom, it’s too much advice. All at once.  Too much advice mom, is like a bunch of rocks too close together “, you said, and then told me that, “it should be more like a long string, strung out over time.  Not all at once. Ok?” 

I hear ya kiddo, you are speaking my language and I am astounded by your wisdom.  You have my word to not barrage you with too many words too close together; but whenever you need to take a rock from that pile, you know I am right here next to you and will take your lead. Maybe together we can out to ‘your bridge’ and go throw it in the river.

son

We are just starting this new adventure and you have shown me that you are possibly stronger than your mom. You are showing me how brave you are, how truly adaptable and resilient you can be and I could not be more proud of the person I get to call my son.

You, growing up, is a long game and even though you and I both want it to all be ok for you right now, let’s both try to remember that you need to take your own time with things.  I want you to know that everything I do is for you – so that things are better for you.  So that your easy laugh and smiling eyes are always what people see first when they meet you.

Love,
Mom

Ps: that wrestling match tonight? I totally won!

Dear Kitty,

Dear Kitty,

I would like to thank you for your undying affection, and the fact that your mind is like mine and seems to come awake at the most unlikely moments. I also appreciate greatly, that you want to be near to me, so so near to me, that you find such unparalleled comfort in my hair, my breath,  and my skin. That though you have many choices of where to be, you choose me.

I think I understand you, that you just want to know someone is there, ready to listen to you, really hear what you have to say, and just sort of well, be together, in those otherwise perfectly quiet hours of the day, when it seems nothing else is happening. That you would choose me is so very humbling. And of course to know, with confidence, with every fiber of fur on your adorable and never annoying self, that there is one person who no matter what you ask of them, perhaps even demand, will not hurt you. Even though it may cross their mind 6,790 times in the short span of the hours between 4-6am.

And without a doubt, I thank you for your vote of confidence in me, that at ungodly hours you know you can count on me to be there, to get up and attend to your modest and such well-timed needs and mostly that you recognize and simply cannot resist my animal magnetism, for why else would you need to sleep not just near me, not close to me, but on me, on my head to be precise; kneading my pillow to find the very best possible spot to get as close to me as humanly, animally possible. Oh, and lest I forget, allow me to express my gratitude for what appears to be your utmost confidence in my abilities to function with very little sleep, with cat-scratcher-sandpaper-behind the eyes focus. You are, without a doubt, my biggest fan.

Yes, I understand you and I am eternally grateful to have your endless, impartial affection.

I just have one small request, that while I am sure you envision our time together as nothing short of purr-fect, that you might find a time other than 5:08 am to express your undying love, admiration and affection for me.

Love,

Your faithful human

Bonnie

Special thanks to Mimi for the video find 🙂