I was at the bank a few days before Christmas and I saw this cute little boy in my daughter's elementary school class. He's six and missing several front teeth and darling. Love that little boy. He came up and hugged my leg. His granddad looked at me askance until I explained the connection. Then Cutie-boy said, "And you're the lady who wrote me the note!"
It's true. I'd written Cutie a thank you note back in October. He had helped our family by chance at a fair, spending a few hours passing out balloons to kids. It was fun work, but that kid really worked! Hours he and my daughter raced to catch every passing child and hand a balloon. They covered that fair in latex, bless their hearts.
So, a week or so later I was writing thank yous to various deserving folks, and I whipped up a quick note for Cutie and dropped it for him at the school then thought no more of it.
But he did. In fact, it made him beam. His grandma mentioned it to me a month ago, then his mom did a few weeks later, and now Cutie himself. It mattered to him.
Weird, and surprising.
A while back I read an article in my ANWA group's monthly newsletter. It was written by the highly talented and strikingly gorgeous Donna Hatch (get to know her if you like a good, juicy, clean romance!) Her suggestion was that all of us writers should pause and use our writing for good, to improve the world around us. Me, I'm not into writing stuff that really "matters" so I almost skipped the rest of the article, but it was Donna's so I read on.
In fact, she didn't suggest only writing "uplifting" or "heartwarming" stories. (Whew, not that I'm against what is uplifting, praiseworthy, or of good report, in general.) Instead, she suggested that we use our writing, which is our gift, our talent, to serve someone else at least once a day. Write a kind note, write a friendly email, send an encouraging comment even if only on facebook. Something along those lines, although those may not be her exact ideas.
That article rolled around in my mind for a few months, and now, with Cutie's reaction, I realized just how valuable the "gift" of writing can be. It can change a little one's happiness level! It can make a little boy run up and hug your leg in the bank because he knows you appreciate him.
Now isn't that a sweet thing?
Back to my old standby Robert Frost poem "Maple," but with a twist: "Send some dear ones some words and see what happens."
Tucson, Arizona, alone!
Mmm. Sweet, frosty slush with real fruit chunks in it. Light, snowy, delicious. Hey, condolences to my snowbound friends in parts north-flung, places Robert Frost would write about with apple trees and fall leaves and wooden fences. But here in Arizona, this is the time of year we can at last venture out of doors without protective clothing. I shall always love December as the crowning time of year.
Drink a big styrofoam cup of lemon Eegee's to that!