A Dying Mother’s Letter To Her Daughters

Link

A friend of mine sent me this link and I wanted to share it with you.  Julie expresses herself so beautifully and with practicality that I find inspiring:

Julie Yip-Williams’ Letter To Her Daughters

If you want to read more, Julie’s memoir, The Unwinding of the Miracle, is available to read.

If you want to write a letter and share it with others, please send it to Letters@LastGoodbyeLetters.com.

Yad Vashem Launches Online Exhibit – Last Letters From The Holocaust: 1944

This website is a historical treasure of letters and photos.  Nothing I can write here will do justice to the emotions this online exhibit creates in the viewer.

Last Letters From The Holocaust:  1944

Luigi and Anna Ventura 1927–Photo from Ya Vashem Document A…

After looking through the exhibit, I feel stronger than ever that letters are powerful, meaningful and important.  Write your own letter today.  If you need help getting started, click on the tab above titled How To Write Your Own Letter.  And if you would like to share your letter with others, please e-mail it to:  Letters@LastGoodbyeLetters.com.

The Goodbye Letter You Write Can Be Any Length

Recently I received a phone call from Jasmen who needed help writing a short “goodbye love letter” on her brother’s gravestone located in another country.  Tragically, he died while he was waiting to come to the United States to be with the rest of his family.  Jasmen wanted something that would give others a sense of how precious and important her brother was to her family in the event future relations would visit his gravesite.  Needless to say, the message had to be short, but we followed the same procedure as presented in the How To Write Your Own Goodbye Letter outline.  Although I have not seen the final stone, here is what we came up with together:

Even though we were apart in miles, you were forever in our hearts.

Photo courtesy of Simeon Muller and Unsplash.

Sometimes keeping a message short is harder than writing pages and pages.  Either way, if you have even the smallest feeling that you would like to write a letter to a loved one, I encourage you to write it today.  If you would like to share your letter with others, please send it to:  Letters@LastGoodbyeLetters.com.

 

 

A Letter’s Purpose Can Be As Simple As “Thank You For Being My Friend.”

This letter arrived with no explanation in my IN BOX.  What I took away from reading this is that a letter can heal the writer whether the recipient receives it or not.  Please read on (names have been changed):

Dear Sunitha,

This is the first letter I can remember writing to you. Obviously, I don’t know if I wrote any before. But, even if it’s not my first, it’s likely to be my last for you.

I remember the first time you came up in my college. We’ve been friends for God-knows-how-long, and you’re always there for me. Thank you so much for the love and care. I may not be the best ‘best friend’, but you will always be mean a lot to me.

Remember that when anything happens in college I instantly think, “oh I can’t wait to tell you about this.” You are in my mind 24/7 every hour of the day. I have gone like so many days right now without talking to you and it is killing me.There is only one thing in this world I have really not told you about and it is that without you I feel like no one, like I should not exist on this world.

Even if we live a thousand lives, I will always pick you as my beloved best friend.

If I could do it all over again, I would. And I wouldn’t change a thing.

My hope for you is when you’re looking back, years from now, you’ll be able to say the same.

Our path is separate now, Sunitha. And I know you’ll find a way to do what’s right. You always have.

Take care of everyone for me. And take care of yourself. You deserve to be happy.

Thank you for being my friend.

Goodbye, mate.

Sajjad.

unsplash-logoClick PhotographyStudioIf you would like to share a letter you’ve written, sent it to Letters@LastGoodbyeLetters.com.

Many People Can Ease Grief By Writing A Letter

Quote

Recently, American poet Donald Hall died at the age of 89.  Writing was part of his DNA. Hall wrote poetry, memoirs, plays, short stories, magazine articles and children’s books.

But he also wrote letters.

Donald Hall wrote two books were about the painful experience he had dealing with the death of his wife, poet Jane Kenyon.  Hall confessed that he wrote “her letters after her death.  And writing her letters after her death gave me the only sort of happiness of the day.  I felt in communication with her somehow, not supernaturally, but poetically.”

But you don’t have to be a poet laureate to feel the release of grief by writing to a loved one.  Janet sent me a letter at 1:15 this morning.  It’s a beautiful letter to her father.  And the beauty is that she can continue to write him letters and feel the comfort of him whenever she needs to quiet her tears.

Thank you, Janet, for sharing your letter:

Dear Dad,

It’s been eight years since you’ve gone.  But it never gets easier for me.  I miss you so very much.  You are the best dad ever.  No one can ever love me like you.  Your death has totally changed me and my life.  I miss every moment we spent together.  I wish you didn’t have to go.  It makes me very sad when I see that you aren’t with my during the important events of my life like my graduation ceremony.  I want you to see how much I’ve grown up.  Your little daughter isn’t small anymore.  But I’ll always be your princess.  I love and miss you to the moon and back.  I long to meet you again.

— Your little girl. XXXXXXXXXXXX

If you would like to share a letter and encourage others to do the same, please send your letter to Letters@LastGoodbyeLetters.com.

 

A Letter From Reece

This came across my desk a while ago.  I thought it was a beautiful letter and wanted to share it.  This shows that a letter doesn’t have to be written by a poet or professional author.  This shows that a letter doesn’t have to be physically delivered to the intended recipient.  Little Reece says it all in a few words and a lot of XXXs.  I know this warmed his mother’s heart in Heaven.

Reece’s letter

In case you can’t read it from the picture, here’s the content of the letter:

To mommy

I love you a million times around the world and back.  I wish you didn’t have to die.  I remember playing with you and that made me happy.  I know you are an angel now Mommy and you can see me all the time.  I feel sad but I’m going to be brave.

Love from Reece

If you need help writing your own letter, click on the link at the top menu bar: HOW TO WRITE YOUR OWN LETTER.  Or contact me personally at        Susan@LastGoodbyeLetters.com.

 

Glen Campbell’s Wife Writes An Open Letter In Response To His Death

Back in the 1980s I was fortunate enough to meet Glen Campbell in person–in a green room before an interview.  He had his guitar and asked me to sing with him.  Now, EVERYONE knows EVERY word of EVERY song of Glen Campbell’s, but I was so nervous I couldn’t remember many.  I was so embarrassed, but Glen was very gracious.  In this link, Kim Campbell writes her letter.  CareLiving.org

I hope Kim’s letter inspires others to do the same for their loved ones.  Someone I love is beginning to experience dementia as well.  It’s a tough thing to watch someone slowly loose who they used to be.

Kim and Glen Campbell courtesy of CareLiving.org

Kim and Glen Campbell courtesy of CareLiving.org

My last letter to Kim

It’s been one year since I wrote my last letter to my college friend, Kim.  It’s taken me one whole year to post it.  Now I understand why some people don’t want me to post their letters–it’s very personal.  It’s very vulnerable.  It seems so inadequate and I don’t want the world to know how inadequate I am.  But if I’m asking others to share, then I should as well.  This is a tribute to a woman who was strong and thoughtful and smart and sassy and classy and so much more.  I hope my sharing of this letter will encourage others to share their feelings in writing so that opportunities to tell people we love them won’t be lost because we are too “scared” to do so.

Dear Kim:Kim

Forgive me for impersonally typing a deeply personal letter, but I have so many thoughts I want to get out quickly and typing is my best way to do that.

I’m thinking back to the first time I saw you in college. In our pledge class, I was sort of intimidated by you because you were so self-assured, poised and smart! You spoke your mind with confidence and everyone could tell that you were a thinking woman and someone to be respected. But you were also warm and fun-loving. I felt special that you included me with your ‘gang’ in the Rho Sigma Club in our chapter room and with your family’s poker nights.

As we’d meet on and off through the years, I’d always come away feeling like I was a better person for being around you. You made me think harder and deeper about important things than anyone else. I still (to this day) feel a little intimidated by your mind’s bright thoughts.

Something that has bothered me for a very long time, and I never knew how to bring it up was that for a few years, we fell out of touch. I missed being a support to you when you could’ve used a hug. I’m not even sure how we got back in touch, but I’m glad we did. And, of course, this past year we’ve gotten even closer. The good thing about that is that my husband has gotten to know yours better and has grown to care about him very, very much.

Every time I have a dream, I wish I could discuss it’s meaning with you. I remember when we were discussing my childhood dream in your home and you brought out meaning that I couldn’t figure out. Even if I asked you to tell me a step-by-step method of analyzing my own dreams, I’m sure I couldn’t find the meaning that you can. I guess that’s what years of specialized training does for a person!

And I love that you and (your husband) find meaning and spirituality in ceremony. As I was doing tai chi this morning I was thinking of what you may be doing and thinking right now. I felt connected to you and the world and thinking that there are so many things in this Universe that we don’t understand. And maybe that’s OK. As I “waved hands like clouds” I breathed in and gave thanks to the Universe that you are in my life. I gave thanks that there is a continuity of life and, as I think I told you once, I feel that we are all connected like the great Aspen groves are connected underground, sight unseen, to make up the largest living organism in the world. As we say during the grand terminus: Bring Heaven to Earth.

This letter so inadequately expresses my feelings. Such is the failure of language. But I am a better person for knowing you, and I thank you for that.

Love. Love. Love.

 

If you feel compelled to share a goodbye letter, please use the contact form listed on this site.

A Farewell Tribute To A Furry Friend

Sometimes–often times–our best friends are of the non-human variety.  While we love our pets and cherish them during their time with us, many of us realize the enormity of their companionship only after they are gone.  Big or small, four legs or two, furry or feathered or scaled, animals make the world and our lives better simply by being themselves.

One friend of mine expressed her sadness in a poem which she generously allowed me to share with you here:

 Little Jasmine

In the blink of an eye, my littlest love is gone and can’t be replaced.
With her white silky hair and picture perfect face, she tried to teach
me that life isn’t a race.
I was so focused on her noise and her constant demands.                                            Little did I realize how much I’d miss the attention she commands.

A little tiny girl full of life love and play,                                                                             She loved her mommy until the end of her day.

I miss your morning kisses and being followed around.                                                         I miss having you as an alarm clock and your watchdog sound.
I miss your excitement while I was making your food. I miss being kissed by your tiny face and cute little nose.                                                                                                             It was you that kept me on my toes.

I miss carrying you to bed and finding you on my shoulder in the night.                               I didn’t realize how much you were my guiding light.

I wish you were with us, it’s so empty now.                                                                 Thank you for the 10 years of being my biggest fan, little baby and pal.

If only I would have focused on appreciating you more.                                                       I wish I could come home and see you waiting by the door.

Jasmine, the little girl that I will always adore.

Little Jasmine

 

Write a letter to your loved one–animal or human–and share it.  If you would like to share it with the world, please send it to me and I will post it with your permission.

As our children graduate, now is the perfect time to write them a letter.

A lot of young people have just graduated from high school or college and are headed off into the big world–whether it’s on to work or college or the military or marriage and family or other adventures life brings.  But with a wave of wistful nostalgia, many parents think back on their little children astounded that they have grown into amazing young adults so fast.  And while most parents are saddened to see their children fly the nest, we are also happy because that is the way of life.

Photo courtesy of Omar Franco

Photo courtesy of Omar Franco

One such mother shared a letter with me that she wrote to her daughter upon graduation.  The letter itself is beautiful and full of loving detail, but the daughter’s response was sweet as well–giving her mother a hug.  I believe this letter from mother to daughter may have more impact on the child as she grows into a young woman and, perhaps, has children of her own.

And the beauty of a letter is that it can be cherished and re-read over and over finding new meaning and importance in the words as the reader changes with time and experience.

Here is the letter:

My dear daughter:

 

Words cannot begin to describe how proud I am of you.  When we decided to bring our second child into the world we didn’t do this lightly.  As parents, we want a perfect world for our kids, but know this is not reality.  You have become a very giving, caring, awesome young lady and this world will be so much better off with you in it.  You can make this world a better place!

 

You have always been brave and a leader.  In preschool, your teacher told me after playtime you had no problem telling the other kids that “This goes here and put that there.”  Your braveness was evident with you never being bashful to ask for things.  For example, when you were three years old at McDonald’s you would go ask the cashier to exchange your toy if it wasn’t the one you had wanted.

 

I learn from you every day.  I find myself coming to you for advice often, and you always have it!  You are an amazing, caring person who always looks out for the little guy.

 

College starts in a few months, and it will be an exciting new chapter in your life.  It will be an opportunity to explore who you are and discover what you want to be.  Success is not measured by the money you make but by the goodness you do for others.

 

Pursue your dreams, look to God for guidance and enjoy life my sweet daughter!

 

I love you with all my heart,

Love Mom

 

I hope you feel encouraged to write a letter to your child or loved one.  If you would like to share you letter, please contact me at Letters@LastGoodbyeLetters.com