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Last night, feeling the stress of uncertainty, I sent out a toilet selfie captioned, “Thinking of you, and I hope you are feeling safe tonight.” I sent it to the people I miss and wish I could collect together in one big safe house, with enough toilet paper to ride out the apocalypse. I probably shouldn’t be cuddling my buddies right now, but I want nothing more. 


A selfie will have to suffice.


My grandparents do not have Snapchat. In fact, I tried to show them how to email, and it’s a struggle. 


To feel close to them, I wrote a note in a Hallmark card. How old fashioned. I customized it a little, adding “GRANDPARENTS” at the end of the blue greeting on the front that said “HI! You’re AMAZING.” They’ll appreciate it, they like to laugh. 


I’m worried about them right now. I shouldn’t be. I know my grandmother has more canned goods stockpiled that I could eat in a month, and they are hardy people. Forget going to the store for eggs, they have chickens wandering around outside. They live in the middle of nowhere, like Courage the Cowardly Dog. Germs would have to get out there horse-and-wagon-pioneer style. 


Still worried.


But I wrote them a note in a card that is sunshine yellow. It has “good mail” printed on the envelope in bold black print. I know it’s a slogan, but it’s comforting. 


My Grandmother told me how, when she moved away from her parents the first time, her mother cried. So my grandmother sat and wrote her a letter every day. She did it to help her mother feel close, and remind her she was safe. It was good mail. 


This week, more than others, I understand the value of good mail. I want to feel close in a more tangible way than selfies. I want to touch something I know my grandparents will touch (you bet I washed my hands first). 


If you are feeling far away from your family and classmates in this season of uncertainty, consider sending them something that feels more tangible than a snap or text. Send an email full of photos, a letter with your best handwriting, or that postcard from vacation you’ve been saving. I hope good mail will help you feel closer.

BrierMae is an English, Creative Writing Major. They are a femme force of action and food enthusiast. They are invested in caring for their community through writing, conversation, and as many cups of tea you can drink.
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