People do strange things. All too often, those strange actions are ones that cause discomfort and pain to those around us. This story is not a story like that. This story is one in which a person is taking action to stir positive emotions in those around her. One in which she has made a conscious effort to seek out people who may feel invisible, or people who have been through some things.
This story has tickled my imagination and I hope it does yours as well. Hannah Brencher is the Juliet to her city. That is, she has written love letters to be found in all areas of her city by different people. The first one she wrote was addressed “If you find this letter… it is for you.”
Finding Love Letters
Can you imagine finding a love letter in your coat pocket, on the sink of the bathroom, tucked behind the subway seat, or on the water fountain? A letter that gave you a small reprieve from the things going on inside your head. A letter that gave you purpose for a moment by showing a kindness. This is what Hannah did for people.
Then it developed further. She began a website and branched out to have others try this out in their communities. The website is called moreloveletters.com. The website now connects people who need love letters with others that have begun writing love letters.
Examples of Lives Changed
One particular happy story involves a lady by the name of Briana. She was a single mother struggling to pay rent. Hannah wrote out her story and requested letters for Briana. The day came to check her PO Box and forward on the letters. She opened the box and there was nothing, but a small sticky note. Low and behold so many letters were received that they didn’t fit in the box. The letters were compiled and sent on to Briana.
Put yourself in Briana’s place for a moment (or any of the letter receivers’ shoes.) Can you imagine the immense relief of no longer feeling alone? In world where we remain so connected through electronics and the interwebs. Invisible strings that connect us, these letters are physical representations of a connection that is lacking in these other communications—connections that can be felt, touched, and slept with under our pillow.
I remember as a child putting my most special treasures under my pillow. The troll doll with the jeweled belly that I made wishes on, my list of dreams and wishes for the year, and my bible when I went through a particularly religious phase. I feel like this sort of letter would be a good fit to remind me of the love.
Please do your self a favor and visit this article from Hannah Bencher herself and read some more examples of this awesome project she started and has continued. The article can be found by clicking this link.
Hannah speaks of chemotherapy patients, PTSD sufferers, veterans, and people fearing they wouldn’t leave a mark on the world. These people received love letters. Bundles of letters from fellow human beings that didn’t want people to feel alone. People who followed her lead to reach out and show love.
How You Can Get Involved
I don’t know Hannah, but this work that she does makes me happy. I take joy in the joy she is spreading. If we take a second to look through our own lives, we may find things can we do to bring joy to others. Letters to soldiers might be a good starting off point. Thanking them for all they do and showing support for all that they give up to serve the country. Please also check Hannah’s website MoreLoveLetters.com to get started on your letters.