Last week I received two thank you notes. One was from a friend whose husband had died the week before, thanking the library for sending flowers. The other was for a birthday present, sent by a friend suffering from dementia.
I mention these two things because formal thank-you notes seem to have gone the way of the dinosaur. I am not a formal person, but more than once in the past few years, I have wondered if a present sent for a birthday, graduation, wedding, or baby shower ever arrived because the gift was not acknowledged. Since I was not able to attend the events, there was no way to know. I was in the awkward position of not wanting my gift to have been lost, but also not wanting to appear like the grumpy aunt who wants to know why the thank-you notes haven’t been sent. A quick email or text would have been more than sufficient.
I am not Miss Manners, and my point is not to have everyone go out and send a thank-you note. But the fact that two people with many cares and worries managed to send one reminded me that I need to be more aware of the kindnesses that people do for me on a regular basis and express my appreciation.
And by thanks, I don’t mean the mumbled word that really just means “Okay, we’re finished with this transaction.” I mean an actual expression of heartfelt gratitude for the person.
I’m going to try (meaningfully) thank five people this week. Why don’t you join me?