My daughter loves writing notes.
Sometimes when she is upset, she will write a handwritten note and slip it underneath my office door. Always, always, she writes, “Please write me back.” I do, of course, even if the note comes during the busiest part of my day. We’ve always emphasized the importance of writing as way to express emotions, especially since her default is to cry when she is upset. I know one day this kind of communication may wane. She may grow out of writing notes or deem it as childish. It is another rite of passage I risk losing as she grows up.
These notes are important because they also help cultivate a pathway in expressing gratitude. I enjoy writing Thank You notes or sending a random card to a friend. With the advent of technology, it is refreshing to receive something personal and handwritten in the mail. Some of my favorite notes are tacked up on a bulletin board in my office and serve as reminders (especially on those days that I need some uplifting words) of how much I am loved. I’ve tried to teach our daughter the importance of writing Thank You notes after her birthday parties, sleepovers or when a friend shows her a particular kindness.
Last week, my daughter decided to write a thank you note to me. What prompted her note? I surprised her at summer camp with lunch from Subway and kept her company while she scarfed down her sandwich and chips. When she came home in the afternoon, she headed straight to her room and lingered a little longer than usual. I heard her bolt out of her room, her footsteps quickening toward my office and in her hand she held up a card.
I asked, “What’s this?”
She said, “It is for you, Momma. Open it.”
When I opened it, this message appeared, “Thank you mommy for bringing me Subway. You are very kind to use time from your day and give me Subway. You are the best momma. I could never ask for a better mommy! Love you lots. You are my BFFL. Best Friend For Life. Love you.”
I paused for a second after I read her sweet message. I never envisioned that delivering a sandwich might evoke this kind of response from her, but my simple gesture seem to make an impact. Not only on her. But for me too. I read the note a few times and reread the line, Best Friend For Life, over and over again. This one note created an umbrella of varying emotions: love, adoration, surprise and a twinge of sadness. A time will arrive when I will not be anointed the title, best friend for life. My hope is that she will still retain that fondness for me as she grows older, but I know, that like all relationships, we will probably endure arguments and disagreements. It is the natural curve of the mother-daughter relationship.
For now, though, I will focus on her words. And hope that she never loses her need to write a note.
Sometimes a small gesture makes a huge impact and it remains ingrained in our memory. I have such memories from my childhood. She is precious and you are both blessed.I love that she writes you notes. I found some little notes that I wrote my mom when I was small. It surprised me to see them. She had kept them all her life. 🙂
Oh, Ayala. I am so happy that you found notes that you wrote to your Mom. I am certain uncovering some of your writing as a child gave you comfort and helped you remember some happy memories with your Mom. xoxo
So sweet. It’s wonderful you’ve taught her the value of words and kindness.
Thanks, Susan. What a lovely compliment. My goal is to certainly teach her those important values and my hope is that she cultivates these ideals as an adult.
What a sweet story. The most memorable note I ever got from Marc was when I was in the bathroom and the kids wanted me to come out. They didn’t like me to be in there, away from them. So Marc slipped me a note that read “Mom is node.”
I love how the notes can range from funny to sentimental. My daughter’s note will definitely be one that I remember forever.
Great share!! Enjoy those moments 🙂
Thanks, Mari. I intend to treasure and enjoy these moments. I appreciate your kind words.
I have tears streaming down. So beautiful. My children’s notes are not as prolific. But when they are so moved, I treasure their words. I hide their little notes in unexpected places (between books on a shelf, a pocket, a purse, a wallet) so I can re-discover them again and again.
Thanks, Jane. I know that years from now this note will give me so much comfort and joy. I like how you hid your children’s notes in unexpected places. What a great idea. xoxo
What a treasure!
Thanks, Windy. This note will certainly land in my keepsake box.
Oh so lovely. I can’t wait until my girl masters the art of writing just a bit more and then, oh then, I plan to do the same with her. The written word is so beautiful. I hope she never outgrows it.
Thanks, Tricia. I hope she continues to write and let me know how she feels. It is a great way to get an inside look at what their minds are thinking. You will absolutely adore the first note that you receive from your little girl.
That’s so beautiful. My daughter is still working on reading/writing but I can’t wait to hear how she will express herself. It’s pretty adorable now when she dictates to us what to write, but it’s still her voice even if it’s our writing.
What a lovely surprise – from you to her, and from her to you.
When S. learns to write, you will be floored at the notes you receive. It is one of my favorite ways to communicate with my daughter.
That is the sweetest thing ever, Rudri. What a gift your daughter is.
Thanks, Alison. I love unexpected good surprises from her.
She is the sweetest. What a treasure!
Her note made my day!
There is so much that is wonderful about this post…I read your daughter’s note first, and I smiled because my son’s FAVORITE “restaurant” is Subway. I have not received any notes from him about it though (maybe I should surprise him with a lunch ;-)).
The other thing that really struck me is that you have a daughter who also cherishes the written word. I think that is significant. It doesn’t always happen that way, and I think that more conscious parents will accept and appreciate whatever gifts their children have, but I am thinking it must be a special kind of happy when that gift matches your own. I love and admire that my son’s interests lie in math and the more analytical subjects, but once in a while when I meet a child (usually a little girl) who loves writing I think, “wow!”.
I bet your daughter will keep writing (to you). I had that kind of relationship with my second grade teacher, who used to write me all the time and give me books every year. We are still friends, nearly 40 years later. We don’t write the same long letters to one another that we used to but we did it for quite some time.
Oh Cecilia, thanks for these words. I must admit that I have a drawer that is filled with notes from my daughter. She communicates her joy and sadness this way. Perhaps it is because of how she views me, as a reader and a writer and someone who worships the written word.
I love that you have this relationship with your second grade teacher. I’ve kept up with my middle school librarian and honored her in one of my 40th birthday letters. She wrote me back and it offered a joy that I really cannot quantify in words.
Hope we can meet someday with our families and our kids can dine at Subway. xoxo