I’m a person who likes to express her love, appreciation, gratitude, joy, sorrow, through cards. As far back as I can remember, I’ve always been fascinated by these lovely cards with their beautiful designs and messages.
When we were children, our father worked in Guam, USA. Every special occasion, and especially during our birthdays, he would send pretty cards with his own dedications. My mother compiled them in large albums and every now and then, we kids would open them and look lovingly at the cards our father had thoughtfully written.
When I was in high school and would get the opportunity to go to different cities to compete in secondary schools press conferences, I’d spend much of my “pocket money” buying cards.
Before entering my 5th and final year in college of engineering, I needed to complete a two-month practicum. Since we lived in a small town in a faraway province where there were no chemical processing plants or factories where I could have my on-the-job training, it was inevitable that I would stay in Manila and have my practicum there the whole summer.
Since this would entail a lot of expenses, and my parents were unable to provide for it, I entered a townwide “popularity contest” where the candidates were to solicit money and during the canvassing, whoever came up with the largest sum won and crowned as Miss [the name of our town] during the town fiesta. A certain percentage was given back to the candidate, and the rest went to the town’s coffers to fund projects. (Back then, this kind of fund-raising was very popular).
Not knowing where to solicit (because our little town was already saturated with the solicitation envelopes), I asked my older sister if I could write to her godmother who lived in the states. (When we were younger, her godmother always sent her birthday and Christmas gifts which always made me envious).
I sent her a card with my carefully-written message. I told her how blessed my sister was for having a godmother like her, always thoughtful and kind. She contacted her mother-in-law who was our next-door neighbor and gave instructions about her generous donation to my candidacy. She also told her mother-in-law how touched she was by my card and said that it was her first time to read a thoughtful message like that.
How easily can we write our love and gratitude on a small piece of card, enclosed that in an envelope and make the recipient glad, encouraged, inspired, loved?
When I passed the board licensure exams for Chemical Engineering, I sent a card to the two elderly people who welcomed me and let me stay in their home in Manila while I reviewed. Our overflowing gratitude can be put into a card and make the recipient know that her hospitality or act of kindness hasn’t been forgotten.
Even now that I’m over forty, my practice of sending out cards with my loving messages has not waned. In fact, I buy cards by the box now, and I send them out to friends and family near and far. You know, as near as our elderly neighbor across the street :-).
This practice has been picked up by my daughter, but most of the time, she makes her own cards. When I was preparing to go to the hospital to give birth to our second baby, Hannah, then almost seven-years-old, handed me a folder full of her lovingly-crafted cards and insisted that I bring it to the hospital, saying, “So you have something to read and you will remember me.” Imagine the devastation I felt in my heart! Why? Because I still hadn’t fully recovered from my illness by the time I delivered my baby and I was so scared thinking that I might not be able to survive it.
How about you? Do you have stories of card-giving and the love that’s enclosed in it? You’re welcome to share!
Where I buy my cards:
- UNICEF cards from www.unicef.ph
- DaySpring cards from www.dayspring.com
- Joni Eareckson Tada cards from www.joniandfriends.org