Dorothy Atkins Whose Prayer For a Different Life Was Answered Rather Abruptly Offers a Wonderful Update From Where She Sits

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Dorothy Atkins master of the love letter whose prayer for a different life was, oops, answered without warning
Dorothy Atkins master of the love letter whose prayer for a different life was, oops, answered without warning

Imagine day after day after day riding the train into San Francisco to get to a job you don’t really like, and daily as the train chugs up the Peninsula and into San Francisco you pray for a change in your life. Every morning you sit in the same seat on that train, look out the window, think and do some writing. You talk about the world you see from where you sit. Now and again you throw in another prayer for a changed life.

And, then, bingo, one day you get called into your employer’s office and are told that this, yes, this very day, is your last day at this job you don’t like but that does pay the bills. You are stunned. Your prayer has been answered, but you float your eyes toward heaven and mutter something like, “I didn’t mean today.” Difficult economic atmosphere, and cuts have to be made. You are given the choice of being transferred to another state or taking a retirement package. You take the package.

Blink twice and the contents of your desk and office are boxed. You walk out the door of your not-so-loved-anyway office, get on that train and realize you no longer have anywhere to go in the mornings. What should your very next step be? Uh-huh, why not just buy a new pair of not-on-sale shoes and know that the only sensible comment to make is, “What a fabulous gift is this brutal shove out of the womb!”

Dorothy Atkins realized that although the timing was not what she expected, her prayer had been answered. This is a wish-for-a-different-life story with a wonderful ending. The ending? A different life, of course. Every ending is also a beginning whether you know it or not. The issue is to notice the possibilities when a door slams shut. Dorothy did. She took her writings and artistic abilities and created her greeting card business From Where I Sit.

Listen to Dorothy talk about how life can slip into the right gear at just when you think something bad has happened if you would like a nice reminder that we can offer the prayers but evidently cannot control when our prayers are granted or in exactly what way.

And, now the delicious update on Dorothy’s life that occurred when Dorothy recently made a presentation on love letters at the San Jose Woman’s Club that holds community events on a regular basis. Dorothy sent the following letter.

“Hi Janet,

Wanted you to know that I did my presentation on love letters and also played our radio interview.  It was such a well received program. I brought some of my saved letters from around the world and encouraged everyone to send a letter to someone “just because”.

A few days later, I got a letter that began “Just Because” saying how much they were inspired to write again.  I actually got three more letters from the people that attended.  One saying she was starting a pen pal with her grand daughter.  I must say that I am thrilled.

A friend lost a daughter about a year ago and I felt so helpless so I sent her a hand written note with just a little message about the weather then the next month I sent out another with just a little message that my garden had survived the heat.  Just little remarks to let her know that I was thinking of her.  Well it has been a year and I am still sending a little note every month.  She phoned the other day and thanked me and said it had saved her so many times when she was at her lowest. The power of the letter is remarkable.  Thank you for always sharing that message. I am definitely part of the love letter squad.

Warm Hugs,


You know how I am always saying that the gift of a love letter keeps on giving and maybe more as the years go by. Although I am loathe to admit it publicly, “I told you so,” is one of my favorite sentences. We here at Love Letters Live would like to take this moment to encourage you to drop someone (or many someones) a note now and then and see the good you do.

Oh, my other favorite sentence is “I rest my case.”

Thank you, Dorothy, for letting us know how your presentation went and what your love letter meant to this friend, and, yes, you are one of the original love letter squad members.


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