SAN ANTONIO - One woman is spreading love and encouragement in the community through letters.
“One day I sat down, and I started writing letters to myself. They were words of encouragement, words of love, and just words of ‘everything’s going to be ok,'" Nicole Ahr, The Love Letter Library founder, said.
“I was a teacher for six years, and once I reached probably five and a half years of teaching, I knew I didn’t want to be a teacher anymore. That can be kind of a scary thing to realize that you’ve worked so long to become something, and then your heart has different plans," Ahr said.
Writing letters became a therapeutic experience.
Ahr said she was writing a letter at Starbucks one day, and made a spur-of-the moment decision that she would leave it behind.
#followthelovefriday is here! There are some exciting things coming. Check our story today for some fun announcements. For now, I am #stopdropandloveletter-ing at my favorite local coffee shop @commonwealth_coffeehouse. Stop by for some love letters and lattes! Let this be your reminder to grow love wherever you can and whenever you can. It all starts with you and your heart. Stop Drop and Love Letter Stationery is available on the website. (Link in profile). #theloveletterlibrary #keeplovegrowing
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“I just knew that whatever I left behind was going to be found by someone who needed to hear the words. I started leaving all of my letters behind. I didn’t have a plan. I just knew that it felt really good to give something to the world without expecting anything in return," Ahr said.
She started printing envelopes with the words: "If you find this letter, then it belongs to you." Ahr also started sharing images of her love letters with #StopDropAndLoveLetter and #TheLoveLetterLibrary.
"Social media is an amazing thing, and the next thing I know, people were asking me where they can buy my envelopes," she said.
At first, she started mailing the envelopes for free when they started to gain interest.
The practice of dropping love letters started about three years ago. About a year and a half ago, Ahr started outsourcing printing because she could no longer meet the demand.
There are sales in nearly every state and 11 different countries.
“You experience love every day, no matter where you go, and that’s the kind of love that is present in The Love Letter Library. I guess the best place to drop a letter is wherever you are," Ahr said.
She drops about five or more letters in the community each week, and she said the best place to drop a letter is "wherever you are."
"There are people who are walking through their day at the grocery store, gas station, post office or the library.
Wherever you are, there are other people, and you have no idea what’s inside someone else’s heart and if they need a little extra love.”
Ahr said she hopes The Love Letter Library continues to expand and build community.
“Writing a love letter and leaving it in the world for someone to find is creating a little piece of magic in the world where maybe there wasn’t before," she said.