Nettie lives in Alaska. I have forgotten how many years it has been since we have hugged. She and I are co-grandmas of our grandson Dawson. Mr. S and I went to Alaska for the wedding and felt as if we were part of Nettie's family. We made many good memories. Later on, Dawson was born. I flew to Alaska as fast as their namesake air carrier could get me there. That's a whole other story. Several other trips to the great state of Alaska followed.
In time, Dawson's parents moved to Oregon and eventually, divorced. Of course there were a pile of broken hearts in Oregon and Alaska. Nettie and I decided we wouldn't have any of that...we didn't divorce. We had history. We were grandmas and grandmas have certain rights. The way we saw things, we got to share our grandson Dawson and his parents. How could that be wrong?
My grandma pal is an incredible writer but she is hampered by arthritis. We share that disease. While I sometimes come to the computer for respite, she doesn't. Each letter is crafted with care and often with pain. Despite this, she will write a four page letter with intimate details of how the snow has fallen and what it looks like. I am learned in her style and read her letters with great happiness. She rarely complains and when she does... there will be a resolution!
Because most of her family lives in Alaska, she writes of her children and her first real home, a condo bought last summer. After she retired there was a time of joy and as it seems to follow, some sadness. You'll understand.
We write to each other at least monthly and yes, sometimes I use the computer, but not often. I am in awe of my friend Nettie. She writes to me and when she isn't able to, she sends cards for every holiday. I am in awe of the fact that this lady remembers everything.
It was the Halloween card that tipped me over. I got her card and it was lovely. Did I send one to her? Nope. My brain is in a state of rebellion. What has been supposed to be brain mass has become brain fog.
I used to be very good at holidays and birthdays. I sent cards and was a cardaholic until my habit was reigned in by reality. If you get a card from me, know that you are in a very elite group. HOWEVER... if you rat me out and tell all your friends about the card and they tell their friends and those friends tell... well, you can see where we are going here. Just know that I would send cards to about one fourth of the people I know every day for some reason or the other. Facebook has saved me a lot of money.
Back in Alaska, we have a far more innocent friend who, without meaning to, has taught me several lessons.
First among those, is that personal notes count. My friendship with Nettie and my understanding of how painfully those hands work have given me a whole new appreciation for any written message from her or anyone else. I don't care whether it's a signature with a short note, on a page or a card. These are originals. I am being given something that no one in the world has.
This is treasure. Of course, letters are filled with more information and detail.
Some of you have saved them from your childhood or teen years. Some of you burned them in disdain. Not to worry. Letters, once read, are kept, shredded or burned... in the heart, the mind or the hearth.
What I want to say is that Nettie's letters are so important to me because she has no rules to follow. She writes what is in her heart and what her hands will allow.
What I want to say is that I try to do this for you every week. The problem is that there are rules I must follow. I have to do spell check and grammar check. I hate grammar (sorry cousin Steve) and find it restrictive.
What I want to say is that I can't say everything I want to say. That's why Nettie will always be a better writer than me. xoxo