Today is my 40th birthday. I commemorated my milestone birthday by writing letters to 40 people who  impacted my life. Some of those included God, family, high school friends, law school buddies, former teachers, writers, Tori Amos, Anne Lamott, and a letter to myself. This endeavor created an opportunity to revisit various times from my life. A time capsule written in the form of letters.

My love for letters started as a young girl. I remember running down our paved cement driveway, opening the mailbox, and grabbing a stack full of envelopes. In the middle of an array of white, a light-blue thin aerogramme raised it hand. I knew my mother had received a letter from home, from her father and mother in India. As soon as the letter touched her hand, she retreated to a corner in our living room, reading the words over and over again.

There is something so tangible about reading a loved one’s words. While writing my own letters, I realized a letter is more that words on paper. I know that every time  my mom read a letter from her parents it carried the smells of her home as she touched the same paper that her parents had in their hands only days ago.

So, today, as my birthday wish, I want each one of you to write a letter to one person. Let them know how you feel, how he or she impacted you, and why that has made a difference in your life.