Monday, May 16, 2011

Unread Letters. {Personal Musings}

My fabulous readers, it has been so long.  I apologize (again, again).  Life has been hectic, and blogging here often takes a backseat to blogging there.  I am working on building up my photography business, and it is taking baby steps, but I am blessed and excited to see how God is making it grow.
But I digress.
Even with my lack of written words, there have been a few blog topics mulling around in my brain. 
Today, I want to share, and (hopefully) encourage you.  I’ve gone back and forth about sharing this…whether it is right to put it here. 
And yet...I will.
I’m sure you have heard, as I have, that writing letters is therapeutic.  And by that, I mean writing letters to those people (or a person) who has hurt you, who you have wronged, even who you have lost touch with.  Etcetera, etcetera. 
And you know what?  It is. 
It began four years ago.  (On a side note:  this post goes hand in hand with this one).
A journey of heartbreak that I know God allowed me to walk.  In the midst of questioning, feeling utterly foolish (still do sometimes), dwelling on silly hopes and trying to understand what was not meant to be understood by me, God came along side of me and began to heal me.  Sometimes my emotions run deep, I don't release things easily, and I let things affect me more than I should.  Let's just say this was one of those situations. 
 It was what it was. 
Nothing more, nothing less.

Mostly, nothing at all.

And still...significant.
I don't want to go into detail, but, looking back, I am glad I walked that journey.  It strengthened me in a way that I don’t think I would have been otherwise.  It taught me to trust in God’s will for my life and to wait on Him.  And to keep waiting on Him.
I began writing letters to that person on the other side of the heartbreak.  Letters I knew, and still know, I would never send.  Letters to that person, and letters to God.  48 in all, the majority written in 2006.

Letters destined to be unread.
I poured out every thought, emotion, question, sorrow, joy, prayer and regret in those letters.  I wrote out my heartbreak in detail, because I didn’t feel like I should (or sometimes could) openly share it. 
I felt like I had set sail on uncharted waters, and writing was the only way I could create the map to the shoreline. 
And now I know this for certain:  those letters are proof that I made it to the other side of a broken heart. 
I can read them now, (though not without occasionally cringing at my own stupidity) and see each step I took, each prayer answered, every silver lining, and every dark cloud.  I have them filed away, doomed someday for the trash.  But for now, they serve as a reference, a reminder of what's finished, a chapter ended.  It may seem silly to some to save them, but I will until the time comes that they should be discarded.
If you are experiencing something:  heartbreak, sorrow, questioning God;  something big, or small in your life, I encourage you to write letters.  To the person, or to God.  It’s not quite the same as journaling about a situation.  It’s pouring your thoughts into words with the intent of somebody reading them.  Journals are often written for ourselves alone.  But letters are written for the intent of being read by another.  Whatever you are facing, try to write a letter.  Short or long.  Simple or wordy.  Keep it.  Or mail it.  I found that letter writing was more honest in my situation than keeping the little purple journal.  Those letters filled in the gap of what was missing in the journal. 
Does it ever bother me that they were never sent?
Because I acknowledge my greatest mistake: refusing to accept that the whole situation meant nothing at all.
{And yes}.
Because they should know that I'm thankful.
Regardless, I am so glad I wrote them. 

If there was one small quote that could summarize all 48 letters, I suppose it would be a line from one of my favorite songs:

"Who can say if I've been changed for the better?
(I do believe I have been changed for the better).
Because I knew you,
I have been changed for good."
In some ways, those unread letters are priceless. 

In other ways, they are nothing more than words on paper.

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