The Text Message

I have been thinking a lot about how I spend my time recently. How to make the most of my time and make my hours count; and how to feel proud of what I have done and accomplished at the end of the day or week. Time is precious, and it is so easy to let “stuff” take up more time than it is probably worth. I started thinking about this while talking to a friend about all the notes I have given her, and other friends over the years. We had a thoughtful conversation about texting, and it led me to writing the following piece.

I love text messages for so many reasons. First, I am incredibly shy and not having to actually talk to someone is a small blessing. I am also guilty of texting Joe from upstairs, because I do not want to get out of bed, and I need to ask him something. If I need a favor from someone, you’d better believe I am texting that. The thank you will be in person though, I promise.

However, some things are too important to text. I recently read a Dear Annie type advice column that said the Thank You card was optional, and a text can suffice! I am sorry but no. A text cannot replace a formal thank you. A personal thank you can totally replace a card. A handwritten note can replace a card, but not a text. We have the time to write a simple thank you if we make it a priority, and we should. We should make kind gestures to others a priority in our days and our weeks. A note is so simple, and will mean so much more to the recipient than a text.

Another example of something too important to be texted is the I love you. This has been more than one conversation between Joe and I. He claims it counts, and I wholeheartedly disagree. There are 168 hours in a week, 168! I am certain he can find a few minutes to write a note. Something tangible that I can keep in my wallet, tape in my journal, or pull out when he is working late or away on business. I cannot touch a text. I cannot keep or savor a text.

A text, regardless of its content, is something that gets lost in a sea of “please pick up milk”, “don’t forget to get the kids”, or a picture of something stupid you saw that day. A text is fleeting, and is not meant to replace the genuine kindness that we need to be giving to others.

Some things are too important to get lost in a sea of mundane texts. A note expressing your gratitude to a friend, or telling someone you love them and that they matter to you is too important to be tossed out into that sea. We have the time to send out more than a text, and I think we will have better relationships and feel better about ourselves if we do.



I’ve just discovered your blog, and have enjoyed your anecdotes. Your first story about your grandfather hit close to home. I think most people can relate. The same can be said for this story. Aside from little notes here and there, I haven’t written an actual letter in ages. You are so right, a physical letter or note would carry a lot more meaning! While I depend on the good old fashion text message, a letter every once in a while could go a long way. Well done!


May 16, 2018

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