Lenten Love Letters: Apologies and Memories

I sent my first Lenten Love Letters this week. The first, I sent out on Ash Wednesday. It was a letter asking forgiveness and letting a (former?) friend know that I continue to value and love her. The second and third, letters of gratitude for wonderful memories. These are to an Aunt and Uncle I wish I saw more often, a relationship which I know I need to put more energy toward. 

Writing these letters has brought home to me how precious the people in my life are, and how tenuous many of my relationships with people really are. These three letters are to people who I don't see or communicate with often - people with whom I wish I had done a better job of keeping in touch and nurturing our relationships.

Someone asked me what my expectations are, in sending these letters. The answer is simple: I don't have any. I'm simply sending out love, and all the silly, hard, wistful, difficult, and holy things that go along with love. I expect nothing, need nothing, in return. If not one person reads their love letter, I've lost nothing. You never lose anything by reaching out with love - only by keeping love to yourself.

“One is loved because one is loved. No reason is needed for loving.”                                 ~ Paul Coelho, The Alchemist


  1. I've seen the idea of Lenten letters elsewhere and I love the idea. It's modeled on the apology letters that are a part of the AA or NA process, where the addict sees their past actions through a sober mind and reaches out to make amends with the people she has hurt.

    Respectfully, I don't think it serves the purpose of Lent to publish those private apologies. J. is really uncomfortable with being used as a cause for praise of your writing. She's asked several times for no more contact, and in light of how things went down with her, I think the most sincere apology you could make would be to respect her wishes.

  2. I understand and removed the letters and left my reflections. It was not at all my intention for any of this to be used as a cause for praise of my writing - I'm writing from the heart, from a very vulnerable and raw place. I was hoping that J would be open to a letter of apology, if that's not the case, then that's that.


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