When you’re a kid, the world is your playground.
Your curiosity comes only a close second to your sense of fearlessness.
And it’s this kind of curiosity and guts that enable kids to create more and experience more.
I was the kid who loved writing letters and handing them over to people on special occassions.
Maybe it was because I couldn’t afford to buy them gifts. Or maybe I learned to appreciate making handwritten letters from school at a young age. I’m not so sure.
I’m heartily fond of those memories. They always felt like the most natural thing to do.
It’s your birthday? Ok, I’ll make you a birthday card! Complete with drawings of you and me.
There never was any time left for second guessing, Wait, will she like my drawing? or Will he appreciate my letter?
There was just, She’ll like this because I made this especially for her!
Who cares when you’re a kid, right?
But somehow, along the way, technology stepped in and text messaging became the norm.
Then the Internet blossomed full force with instant messaging (Yahoo! Messenger, anyone?).
Finally, now we have the infamous Snapchat generation.
It just got even trickier to still send cards when it’s now labeled, old-fashioned. Pffft, labels!
* * *
Anyway, on weekend afternoons, I often hear my kid neighbors playing happily outside.
They’re not holding their phones, pointing the front cam at just the right angle, and making duck faces. They don’t have gadgets that let them play the latest video games. They just have each other and their own innocent, creative little minds.
The sad part is: I walk on by as if I don’t have a care in the world about what they’re doing. Because that’s how grownups roll, right?
It’s that kind of creativity that I miss when I remember how I used to write letters for my friends and family or draw cartoon comics with my grade school seatmate.
It’s that kind of rawness that I crave and want to cultivate in my own work and life.
Art and creativity never age.
They’re just waiting to be remembered, to be used, to be acknowledged.
What about you, what’s your fondest childhood memory? Do you write handwritten letters anymore? Do you often write with a pen and paper?