Post, Not Parcel

In the mail was a dark pink envelope. I recognized the handwriting on it. I removed the other items from the mailbox and rode the slow, hefty elevator up to my apartment. I sorted the roommates’ mail and set it on the table in the foyer. The pink envelope stayed in my hand as I placed an unopened bill and the current issue of my unexplainable free subscription of Rolling Stone magazine on my dresser. I couldn’t find the letter opener, so I took out a pair of scissors. I slit open the top crease of the dark pink envelope and pulled out a card.

The front of the card wasn’t pink, but a light limon – 7up cardstock. At the top in iridescent blue puffy paint and handwritten font are the words in parentheses: My life is richer because you are in it…

Below the words the card is split down the middle with two different depictions. On the left is “my life, regular version”  (in a pink text box at the bottom, same font but smaller, same ink) and above it a small peppering of asterisks and little circles and stars and a little puffy-paint heart outline. On the right half is “my life, plus you” and above it a confetti explosion of what’s on the left in all sorts of bright colors, but also with flowers and boingy-curls and thunderclouds and lightning and shooting stars, filling the entire right half of the card.

I opened the card bottom-to-top, not right-to-left like a book. Above the fold the card is a muted pink, like well-blended strawberry ice cream, or maybe frozen yogurt. More stars and hearts and dots, spread like constellations. It’s very cute. Below the fold the card is ecru and bears the printed message: I’m so glad you’re my friend.

It was like someone letting me breathe. Below the blue puffy-paint words were some of my friend’s personal thoughts in familiar and comfortable script. Tears rolled down my face.

You know who you are, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. You’re one of the very few who have been able to reach this part of me, and it’s not because we’ve known each other for 18 years, though time has definitely enriched our friendship, spanning farther than our ages when we first met, you being there the entire time, regardless of where we were on the globe.

It’s because we’re kindred.