I purchased some thank you cards today while I was out and about. As I was putting them away in my note card drawer when I got home, I paused for a moment. There were two reasons for my pause. The first being: does anyone write thank you notes anymore? With the direction our tech savvy world is headed, thank you cards will be null and void here shortly; I sure hope not. But the main reason I paused was to smile and reflect on the reason I still buy thank you cards...my mama.
Growing up, I vividly remember my mom demanding I take a moment out of my day to compose a sentence or two to give gratitude to the person who sent me a birthday gift or Christmas present. She would inform me the gift was to stay in her possession until I completed my note of thanks. I wanted that present more than anything, so if spewing a few words out onto paper is what it took, I was all in.
It wasn't until I received my very own thank you card for a gift I had sent, that the importance of a grateful recognition, hand written at that, meant something to me. It made me feel appreciated. It made me feel as if the recipient of my gift actually was thankful and full of gratitude. It all made sense...some 15 to 20 years later.
There are certain characteristics of your mother you take on when you have a family of your own. I used to be so scared of what those characteristics would be. Would I develop that chin hair that sticks straight out? Would I yell at my kids for not keeping their rooms clean? Or maybe I'd develop the greatest one of all: the infamous sayings, because I'm the mom, that's why or life's not fair. Oddly enough, I've developed all of the above characteristics of my own mother. The chin hair? I make sure I keep on top of that one. But one characteristic I'm beyond proud of, and I thank my mom for daily, is the ability to let others know how much I appreciate a gift, a kind gesture, or even a thoughtful comment they bestow my way. It never hurts to take an extra minute or two to jot down your sentiments of appreciativeness towards one who has gone out of their way to think about you in such a thoughtful manner. I know my own kids dread having to write those notes of thankfulness, but I hope one day they'll thank me for it. Thank me just as I thank my own sweet mom. I just wish she was here today so I could hand her a thank you note of her own. A note that is filled with my indebtedness to her for teaching me the art of writing a simple note of thanks.