There is a notion of romance to sending a handwritten letter to a soldier at war—miles of land and sea and emotion between you. It is a gesture of hope and gratitude, of pride and encouragement, of love and admiration. It is a reminder that—even as we go about our daily routines and enjoy the comforts afforded by these very soldiers—they have not been forgotten.
And while a handwritten letter may not be as immediately gratifying as an email or video conversation, there is something tangible, something rooted, something magical about ink on paper. For this can be tucked into a soldier’s pocket, it can ride with them through the desert, it can stand with them on the front lines. It can be spritzed with your fragrance and blessed with your kiss.
When a soldier receives a handwritten letter, it is a connection to home, to joy, to their purpose.
As a former military spouse, and current military sibling and friend, handwriting letters to soldiers is an act I feel deeply passionate about. It breaks my heart that our soldiers feel isolated, both at home and abroad. And regardless of my wish that we could make all kinds of lovely things instead of war, I feel an unwavering responsibility to support the wellbeing of those defending our freedom, our safety, our humanity.
So today, as we celebrate our nation’s independence, I hope you’ll join me in celebrating those who continue to make our freedom possible by either handwriting a letter to a soldier you know, or participating in one of the following letter writing programs.
If ever there were a letter to write, it is the one a soldier carries.