Emily Post – Etiquette
When I was getting married, some 19 years ago, I purchased Emily Post’s Etiquette Book. It was important to me that I master the art of correspondence. I still enjoy sending and receiving a snail mail thank you. I am usually quick on the draw and have them addressed and in the mailbox by weeks end. It’s one of those things that I take delight in completing as I cross it of my to-do list. I have a deep affection for heavy weighted letterpress with a colored lined envelope. An old boss gave me a beautiful Waterman pen with a note that said “always take pride in your signature” and I have treasured and used it for many years. Now If only my hand writing was as beautiful as my mothers calligraphy!
So sitting down to compose the thank you’s on my list should be easy …. right? Truth be told I’m struggling and they continue to haunt me. I decided this morning I must tackle it today. It is easy to express a thank you for a small token or gift but how do you truly express gratitude to the people who have helped you in your greatest times of need? During our recent lives journey many people helped our family stay afloat- not missing a beat or a basketball practice! I am very closed- I can do it myself mentality – a flaw of mine I know. I am like most people. I don’t want to put anyone out- take time from their families or make anything about us more important than anything that is happening in their lives. We all have our challenges and who am I to waive the white flag and say we need help.
So here goes a few…..
My daughters teacher must think I am the strangest person in the world! She has offered several times to bring a meal, take Libby home – anything to ease our burden. Who are we to ask a mother of 2, a full time teacher/ educator, a wife, a daughter, a sister for help. It’s just not in my DNA. She must know though that I am just thankful for the role she plays in my daughters life everyday as the best teacher who smiles when she sees her, gives her an extra hug, makes her day as normal as a 4th graders can be and most importantly, instills in her the confidence to be a great person! So, thank you Mrs Adcock.
To all the people who brought meals. I’m not really sure I should thank you because the comments from my girls were blunt. “Mom, this is really good! Why don’t you make this?” “Mom – so and so knows how to cook…. you should spend more time asking her for recipes.” Joking aside, not having to worry about planning, shopping and preparing was a huge blessing – so thank you!
For the friends that live far -from Germany, Florida, DC and Boston– thank you for just calling to check on us. Hearing your voice brightened the day and made us feel loved.
To the friends that helped us laugh during the process, that was the best medicine. I have to share one story that just ticked me to no end. The day before Don was to be connected I received a text from a friend that said “I just remembered a dream from last night. Don was at a party with a huge smile on his face walking around pinching people and saying…. look what I can do. I can pinch again. You were mortified and Don and I were laughing hysterically.” BOTH of those things would be true! So thanks for helping exercise our smile!
One last thank you to share, for the family and people that helped with our children -this is the hardest one for me- our deepest appreciation is extended. You have loved them like they were yours. A close friend of mine just celebrated 40 years of life. I was quiet emotional because I wanted to express to her how selfless she’s been to me in this journey. At her dinner, I gave a toast- I felt myself quivering as I read these words
“When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving us advise, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can stay with us in an hour of despair, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend that cares.”
Our sincere thank you,
Don and Maura Horton