This condolence note lifts the spirit, shows great love and care, has a gentle sense of humor, and heals with the lightest of all touches.. check it out - it will help you escape the prosaic or heavy handed the next time you have to write one.. I can attest from both sides of the situation that writing or getting a condolence note that actually comforts is not such an easy thing. For instance, most grievers loathe to hear, "Well, at least he’s not suffering any more" - that, from my informal poll of friends and family, seems to be the comment that gets top prize for Most Annoying. However, notes that go on and on about how distressed the writer is, are certainly a close second. I may make a list of what NOT to say in a note, one of these days.

But here is a dynamite note that I got from an old boss/friend of mine from 30 years ago, who just learned of my husband’s death. He also knew I was about to become a grandmother. This note hit the spot. It opens up horizons for writing comforting messages, and I think it sets a new bar. It came with a blue baseball cap that had "BR" embroidered in white on the front of it:

Hi BR.

Here is how I got this hat. I was in a store and saw some hats that said B in front and "Republic" in back. I thought, Belle Ruth is not a republic.

Then I saw a hat that said "Banana" in front and R in back. I thought, Belle Ruth is certainly not a banana.

Then I saw a hat that said "BR" in front and I thought, That is just the hat for Belle Ruth.


PS. You may be able to tell from the above that I have been reading a certain amount to a two year old grandson at bedtime.