Documenting the life and times of a dreamer on her gap year. 

InCoWriMo 2018 Lessons

InCoWriMo 2018 Lessons

February is International Correspondence Writing Month, and because one of my 2018 resolutions was to write more handwritten letters, I thought this year was the perfect year to jump into InCoWriMo! Little did I know, I would learn a lot about myself and others during this month -- and there's still a week left of InCoWriMo!

Writing a Letter -- It's Harder Than You Might Think! 

One of the biggest lessons I learned during InCoWriMo is how much discipline it takes to write a letter a day! I'm sure if you're just dashing off a postcard, it's a bit easier -- maybe I should have taken that route for my first year! I'm definitely behind on my letter-a-day schedule, and I'm seriously impressed that there are people out there who manage to write 28 letters in February. I think after InCoWriMo is over, there'll be a little less pressure on the QUANTITY of letters, but to be honest, I didn't really pay attention to that too much, even during this month. 

There's a Facebook Group for Everything

My dad has a key to my P.O. box, and he would sometimes pick up my mail on the way home from work. He'd ask, "Where did you meet your penpals? You're getting so many letters!" Many of my penpals came from the Boho Berry Tribe (y'all know of my never-ending love for Boho Berry!!). This is one of my favorite Facebook groups I'm in, but I rarely comment or post in it. It's just great to read about what the community is up to! The other Facebook group that I joined specifically for InCoWriMo (but I'll definitely be sticking around!) is called Fountain Pen Friends. As a lover of all things stationery, I guess it was only to be expected that I'd eventually get into fountain pens. I have a couple now -- they're definitely starter pens, but they're super fun nonetheless -- and I just feel so fancy using them to write my letters! Plus, because one of the reasons I love handwritten correspondence is because I'm a major history geek, and using a fountain pen just feeds that!! 

Friendship Transcends Age

This lesson actually goes hand-in-hand with the Facebook groups. There are only a few people around my age in the Boho Berry Tribe group, and even fewer in the Fountain Pen Friends group. That hasn't stopped me from making friends with many people in both groups! It's actually interesting to get the different perspectives that come with age and wisdom, and usually, regardless of how old we are, we have a ton in common...even apart from the fact that we're all crazy for pretty paper and pens!! 

There's Nothing Better Than Happy Mail

Even though InCoWriMo revolves around sending a letter a day, the ratio usually isn't the same for receiving letters. Some days, my P.O. box is empty, and on a few separate occasions, I have had a little stack of notes waiting for me! I love checking my mail, and I've always loved seeing envelopes addressed to me (my parents used to give me the mail addressed to "Resident." Hey, that's me!). I usually drop everything I'm doing to read my latest letter!!

A Good Penpal is Like a Hug in a Letter!

Even before we started exchanging letters, I was already developing friendships with some of my future penpals! Especially in the Fountain Pen Friends group, when I made my introduction post, I was inundated with welcoming messages. I also mentioned that I was taking a gap year before college because of some health issues, and I received so many supportive comments from people who had just met me. It really touched me, and that's one of the many reasons that I'll be sticking with the FPF group far beyond InCoWriMo! My penpals' genuine care and empathy have just continued into our physical letters, and I couldn't be more grateful. 

Until next time ~

XOXO, Maria 

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