The Daily Post, Discover Challenge says: This week, share a post about something that’s about to disappear — but worth remembering. What would you save for posterity? Help us remember something hard to find, easy to miss, or about to go extinct.
The older I get the less I seem to care about saving things “for posterity.” I have no children, no one to leave things to, to share what was maybe at one time important to me, or some heirloom I inherited. Something that has gone missing from our world today is letter writing. I write letters to all my nieces when they go away to summer camp, and am still thrilled to receive their letters in return. I have saved many of them- for posterity? To show them someday when they are grown up, for them to laugh perhaps at what they were thinking at the age of 12.
I grew up in a time where we learned penmanship and practiced writing everyday in school. I can remember my 4th grade teacher making us draw slanted ovals- they slanted to the right, over and over and over. That was the warm up before we got down to the business of forming all those letters in the alphabet. My handwriting did develop into something quite pretty to look at, always legible, each letter formed nicely, both capitals and lower case.
As a child, I corresponded with my Grandmother in the months between when I would see her. I received letters from her in her old fashioned script handwriting. I remember the thrill of receiving mail, a letter especially for me in there among the bills and junk mail-how special it made me feel. Her letters were filled with what she and my grandfather were up to, a sense of humor coming through that I don’t remember noticing when spending time with her. Her voice in her letters allowing her a freedom that perhaps she didn’t feel when face to face with someone.
Email is a wonderful way to communicate, typing less cumbersome than handwriting, but there is something about putting pen to paper, to feeling the pen glide as the words from your brain come out through your hand onto the sheet. Is it more heartfelt? Maybe that is the feeling I get when I am writing by hand. It is truly a part of me I am sharing through that pen to paper.
I have saved the letters my grandmother wrote to me, a part of her still with me though she has been gone since 1975. Had we corresponded in email I most likely would have lost her words in the 2 computer crashes I had with no back up at the time. I set to cleaning out old things that clutter my shelves and take up space, but those letters have always remained, will always remain. I take them out every now and then to read, remembering my Grandmother, smiling at the thought of her, so glad to still have this tangible piece of her. For posterity.