Six years ago, I met one of my dearest friends, Isidora! We don't live in the same state, and we only see each other once a year. So how do we keep in contact, you might ask? Emailing? Nope? Texting? Occasionally, more recently. Why, letters of course!!! Yes, I, Hannah Rials, have a pen pal, and I absolutely love it! We're not exactly the most dependable, sometimes it takes us awhile, but we never forget.
I know this is not a common practice nowadays because we have phones and computers--such easy, simple ways to keep in contact with each other. No one needs to bother with snail mail. To quote Urban Dictionary, a Pen Pal is:
A species of human made nearly extinct by the advent of electronic mail, penpals communicate via the ancient art of Penmanship – the inscription of meaningful symbols on filaments of pulped wood. After their creation, these Letters would be entrusted to government officials for transportation and delivery to their intended recipient – often over great distances.
Ha. Ha ha ha ha. Funny, Urban Dictionary. But note that they said "nearly extinct." Isidora and I are two of the few Pen Pals left. I can't recommend this type of relationship enough, especially to tweens and teens. We met when we were 14, and even though we're separated by 9 hours of distance, it's like we've grown up together. Yeah, it takes dedication. But when you get a letter in the mail, it's honestly so exciting that you might just run to your room and write him/her back immediately and have your letter in the mail before dinner time the same day!
It takes dedication and focus, but it's very worthwhile. We connected over books (of course), and our friendship has grown from there. By having a Pen pal and forcing yourself to write an actual letter on paper with a pen, there's just so much more of a connection! And you get to learn about your differences and your similarities in a much cooler way (in my personal opinion).
I'm writing this post to celebrate my wonderful Pen Pal/friend who is getting married in 3 days!!!! I'm so honored that I get to be a part of their special day. This just shows you what a wonderful relationship you can have through paper. I'm in Isidora's wedding. We are more than people who write the occasional letter to one another. We're dear friends. And it has been so amazing to see her grow into a beautiful, still awkward, loving, brilliant young woman. And you can see her growth in her letters (that I've saved haha). I'm so super beyond excited for her and her fiancé!
So I encourage you all to go out and find your pen pal. Form new relationships through pen. And make a new friend! Besides, you get mail, which is one of the most exciting things on the entire planet. If you disagree with me, you're wrong. Accept it and move on!