As I wrapped up another long day at work this evening, I was more than ready to head home, but there was one more very important piece of paperwork that I needed to complete. A letter to my pen pal. Yes, for the first time since I was in grade school, I have a pen pal, and this is not just any pen pal. My pen pal happens to be one of the men who comes to the day shelter for homeless men where I have the privilege of working.
Stan and I have known each other for over four years, and we see each other five days a week, yet we are still pen pals. I do not recall when our correspondence began actually, but now, I cannot imagine my life without the notes that Stan so tenderly presses into the palm of my hand several times a week. The content of the notes always includes his gratitude for my assistance and friendship and his concern about the well-being of my two daughters and me, and each of his sweet notes elicits a hand written note from me. Even though we converse with one another on a daily basis, our correspondence continues, and I hope that it never ends. The time that it takes to write these notes is time well spent indeed.
Stan’s notes are as precious to me as the cards and letters that I have received over the years from my family and friends, and I know from the smile on his face and his words of appreciation that my notes are meaningful to him, too. In today’s age of instant messaging, e-mailing, and texting, the art of letter writing has been lost, so, it warms my heart that Stan and I have resurrected this old school way of communicating with one another.
While it is said that it is better to give than to receive, I think that I can speak for Stan, when I say that we would argue that mutual kindness is even better. It is a simple act of kindness shared between seemingly different souls, but it means a great deal to both of us. Perhaps, the world would be a better place if we all took pen to paper in a positive manner, instead of taking up arms.
Just one thing each day . . .