Dear Dr. Laura,
I would like to tell you about a life lesson I learned as a young girl. From the time I was five and could write, the day after each birthday, Christmas or other event at which I received a gift, I was made to stay in my room all day until I wrote a thank you note to each person who gave me a gift. This included writing out the envelope and everything. I HATED it! I wanted to be playing with my new toys or modeling my new clothes or taking my money to the bank. But NO, I had to sit and write thank you notes!
Well, now I am several decades older and I have to tell you I never receive a gift or attend an event without writing a thank you note. And I am not talking e-mail, I mean handwritten — with a pen on lovely, heavy, creamy, personal embossed stationery. I always write my notes the next day. In fact, sometimes I lay out the paper and pen before I leave for the event and write the note that night before I go to bed. That way it’s all fresh in my mind. I can’t tell you how happy people are to receive a handwritten note in the mail. Sometimes I get a thank you call merely for my thank you! Writing thank you notes reminds me to be gracious and humble. Gracious for the gifts, meals or fellowship I have received, and humble that someone thought enough of me to give them. It’s a win-win. Funny enough, I almost never receive a thank you note for things I give. I guess not all those people had a mother like mine. And I guess my children will probably experience the same. It’s no matter, I am happy to know that I have taught them the way my mother taught me.
Blessings to you,