I read a new book by John Kralik: "365 Thank Yous" and the book relates how at the lowest point in his life the author decided to concentrate on thanking people; he decided to focus on what he had rather than what he didn't have; for an entire year he sent out a thank-you card each day. More importantly, the book tells of the rewards he received; the subtitle of the books expresses everything: "The Year A Simple Act of Gratitude Changed My Life".
I thought, "I'm going to give it a try." I usually write thank-you notes after Christmas; in the the book he wrote that writing thank-you notes for Christmas was how he began, but subsequently he began to write thank-you notes not just for gifts received, but for gratitude for the kindnesses of others, some family and some strangers.
I think this will be interesting and reflective for me! So far, I've sent seven. My husband and brother have placed secret, sealed, wagers, betting how long it will last! The first thank-you card I wrote was to a friend who has done so much for me, in addition to giving Christmas presents.
As I was "rummaging" around, cleaning up after Christmas, and "making room", in my mother's room, I found some post cards with 5-cent postage on them (I have no idea how old they are, but post cards cost 28 cents to mail now!), I used one of the cards to write a thank-you note to friends who'd sent a Christmas card with old Christmas stamps affixed. I thought they might enjoy seeing the old postcard. At a dinner party, I had mentioned how much I liked the old stamps and he told me that they had belonged to his mother. They brought a basket of fruit as a "hostess gift" to a dinner party we had before Christmas. I wrote the "thank you" for that gift and they called today and thanked me for the thank-you card.
Today, I had lunch with several Water Aerobics classmates and one said, "That was the nicest thank-you card!" This lovely lady had called me the week before Christmas and asked if I knew anyone who needed a twin-bed; I told her that my friend's grandson was crying for a "big boy bed"! Gerald and I picked up the like-new mattress, box springs, and frame and delivered them. The little boy jumped on the bed, screaming, "I have a big-boy bed!" I sent a thank-you card, because she did not even know the person and just gave from the goodness of her heart.
Being THANKED for thank-you cards is a joyous experience. That's double-gratitude!
When I told an avaricious acquintance about this project, he said, "Man, that's going to cost $160.00!" I answered, "A cynic is one who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing." It's a favorite Oscar Wilde quote. He asked, "Are you trying to say I'm a cynic?" I laughed and answered, "Oh, no, I'm not TRYING to say anything--I AM saying you are a cynic!"