The Importance Of Reader Mail

Lo bonito de la vida.

There’s something to be said about reader mail.  I’ve often thought this, but never had the nerve to write about it… until today.  You see, to hear myself utter the words “reader mail” in it of itself sounds pretentious to me.  Como aquel que se cree demasiado, o el otro que le hecha demasiado crema a sus tacos, like ‘who the hell are you to be thinking you’re big and bad enough to have reader mail?’  That’s what usually goes through my head when I start to even think about writing on this subject.

No offense to any of my good friends who have already written about this subject matter, quite well I might add.  Believe me.  There have been many idle moments spent in front of my computer reading over your very insightful thoughts… most of which I agree with.  Sure I’ve shared the occasional comment that made me feel extra nice, but from that, to pretending I have any right to demand anything at all, much less reader mail, from you good folks, is a tremendous stretch of la verdad. I am just grateful some of you keep coming back.  ¡En serio!

So why write about it all?  And why now?  It’s pretty simple really.  The other day… this weekend actually, in between grilling up a storm, puras fajitas para Easter you know, and knocking back as many Bud Light’s as I could get my hands on, I received a message from a friend, and a pretty regular reader of this blog, that really made me think.  Though we’ve never met in person, I assume we have pretty similar backgrounds from some of the communications we’ve had in the past.  She’s Mexican like me and pretty proud of her cultura también. Basically, her note was about another woman that she knows who is going through a rough time, and who, like many of our madrecitas once did, is doing as much of whatever she can to see her kids through.

I won’t go into the details of this woman’s life… porque no es mí lugar, but I did want to share a portion of the letter that, I’ll confess, made me tear up a little:

She shared with me about all the cooking and selling of her food (that she’s done) to keep her and her three children afloat. One of the sales items, of course, was tamales. It was the day after I read your post ¡No Te Rajes! I printed a copy for her to share with her children. She doesn’t speak English, but I think it would make her kids proud to know that a successful writer/blogger shared their same history.

I just want to thank you for sharing your personal history with us. And I want to let you know that it is more meaningful to some people than you will probably ever know.

I’m not to sure about the “successful writer/blogger” part, LOL… but I can honestly say, it is my complete honor and privilege to share this piece of my own personal history, and probably many other parts of it as well, with these three young children, and thousands of others out there también, who like many of us, are growing up in a reality, that we all know to well, very rarely offers much foresight beyond the day to day.  If my writing can be meaningful in that regard – in offering so much as a “hey I’ve been there too” to any one of these young kids – I’d feel pretty damn successful already!

Gracias por el mensaje.

3 thoughts on “The Importance Of Reader Mail

  1. Go Juan! Don’t ever think of it that way…it doesn’t sound pretenious. Just keep writing from tu corazón y alma! Whether you are a writer, or or artist, one fact remains the same-you never know who will connect with your work and be touched by it. That’s part of the beauty. 🙂 It’s a wonderful feeling!

    1. Victory and Chantilly, you are so right! It’s always the little things that make things extra special. This note was really unexpected so it was that much more significant to me. Made me think of how few people I could identify with as a kid, and how important it would have been to have just at least one. Not that I’d pretend to be that person, pero entre todos nosotros porque no hacer el intento 🙂

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