11-Year-Old Sends Letter to Her Mailman, Receives Hundreds in Return from Postal Workers Everywhere

A thread of tweets is going viral this week after one little girl’s “wild ride” with her USPS driver has captured hearts across the internet. It’s reminding us all that despite all of the craziness, there IS still good happening in the world.

According to her father, Hugh Weber, 11-year-old Emerson has a “serious letter writing habit.”

“She maintains active correspondence with over a dozen of her favorite people. And, if you’ve been the lucky recipient of one of Em’s hand decorated letters and envelopes, then you have a pretty good idea of the joy they bring.”

Hugh says that when his daughter writes a letter, she goes all in.

“A letter from Emerson is likely to include some art, a joke or two, a mention of her younger brother, confessions of her love for Taylor Swift and enough questions to guarantee a response.”

Recently, Emerson decided to write a letter to thank the family’s mail carrier, Doug, for his service. Hugh says she left nothing out.

“In went Taylor Swift, in went the little brother, in went the jokes,” he said.

Her heartfelt letter read:

“I’m Emerson. You may know me as the person that lives here that writes a lot of letters & decorated the envelopes. Well, I wanted to thank you for taking my letters and delivering them. You are very important to me. I make people happy with my letters, but you do too.”

She continued, “The reason you are very important in my life is because I don’t have a phone so how else am I supposed to stay in touch with my friends? You make it possible!”

Full of personality on the inside and out, Emerson’s letter was a perfect reflection of her! She took it to the mailbox, smiled when Doug took it, and for her, “that was enough.”

But the next day, a package arrived for Emerson with some stamps and two letters: one from Doug, and one from his supervisor, Sara.

It turns out, Doug was so touched by Emerson’s letter that he shared it with Sara, who decided to reach out to Emerson personally.

“Sara said that, as an essential worker, Doug might not be able to maintain regular correspondence, but she sure could, Em started writing that very afternoon.”

But the ripple effect of Emerson’s boldness didn’t stop there. The following week, Hugh and his wife received a letter in the mail addressed to “Mr. and Mrs. Weber.”

Sara had decided to share Emerson’s letter as a “token of thanks” in the postal service’s internal newsletter for the Western United States. Now a lot of other postal workers wanted to thank Emerson with their own letters.

“This has sparked great joy in a time of turmoil in our country, and I thank you for raising a daughter like Emerson,” the note read. “May her love for the country and the United States Postal Service be continued throughout the years.”

A few days later, Doug came to deliver two BOXES of letters for Emerson from postal workers around the country.

“We snapped a quick photo through the door as he and Emerson met for the first time. It was a beautiful moment on silent reciprocity,” Hugh said.

After the family had gone through several of the countless letters, Hugh noted, “These letters are so deeply human. They are filled with family, pets, hobbies, community and an overwhelming sense of kindness.”

He says what they saw was the power of human connection — something we need now, more than ever before.

“Because Em was fully vulnerable, they were too. Em shared jokes, so they shared jokes. Em share[d] her brother, so every gift that was sent came in duplicate. Em shared @TaylorSwift13 and it turns out that the US Postal service is filled with lots of undercover Swifties.”

He continued, “One maintenance manager from Minnesota wanted to inspire her to start collecting stamps so he sent along two stamps of his own from the bulletin board in his office to start her collection.”

Many others sent Emerson stamps to use for her letters. She had counted 218 so far.

Hugh says the letters held something more than just words on a page. Because of one 11-year-old’s intentionality, “people felt seen — some for the first time in a long time.”

So after reading through all of the letters, Hugh says Emerson “did what she does best.”

“She wrote the dad. She wrote his son. She assured the secret swifties not to be embarrassed because her dad likes TSwift, too. She acknowledged that there WERE a lot of letter but that she had time. She sees them all.”

Hugh says he didn’t share the now-viral thread because he’s a proud dad, but rather, because we all have the power to create joy the way Emerson has for so many.

“It is relatively easy, if we take the time, to give others the one thing they need to be well – human connection.”

Because we all have a desire to be seen, known and loved.

Hugh goes on to encourage others during this time of isolation, to do the small act of reaching out. Everyone is in a different place during this quarantine, and there is no shortage of anxiety, depression, stress and loneliness. But, there’s also no shortage of kindness.

Since first tweeting about Emerson’s letter-writing journey on Sunday, Hugh’s thread has been retweeted nearly 25,000 times. He says the family is overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and support for Emerson’s act of kindness.

“We’re seeing all of your replies & retweets,” he said. “We’re reading them aloud as a family. We’re absolutely in awe of the ripples of impact that have come from one letter.”

May we all take the time today to be a little more like Emerson. To decorate an envelope and be intentional and vulnerable with someone in this new normal. And may we pursue the connection we were created to have with those around us. Send a letter, make the call, shoot a text, and take that step of boldness, like Emerson.

Bri Lamm
Bri Lamm is the Editor of foreverymom.com. An outgoing introvert with a heart that beats for adventure, she lives to serve the Lord, experience the world, and eat macaroni and cheese all while capturing life’s greatest moments on one of her favorite cameras. Follow her on Facebook.

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