I love receiving old-fashioned holiday cards with family letters and photographs inside. They show up in my mailbox each day this time of year, and I sort them out from the bills and advertisements before I hit my front door.

Then, with a warm cup of coffee in my hand, I pour over these treasures from family and friends, recalling how our lives have intertwined. And while I love receiving them, it’s been decades since I’ve sent a Christmas card of my own. No pictures of my beautiful extended family. No letter about my year. It’s one of the many unbalanced parts of my life.

Hallmark must have me pegged, because I get so much joy from running my fingers over the rich, heavy paper of the cards, and studying the bright, colorful pictures of snowmen, wise men and twinkling stars above. I tear off the corner of the envelopes where the addresses appear in hopes that I will send out my own epistle the following year. These scraps go into a folder that I lose before springtime.

It’s the 23rd of December, 2015. Many of my card-giving friends and relatives have already realized this is another year where Don has failed to send out a Christmas greeting. But—ho, ho, ho—I’m going to fool them all and mail out dozens of holiday cards with pretty pictures and personal notes on the first of January.

Those friends that know me best will scratch their heads and say, “Yep, even Don can make a positive life change. It just takes him a little longer than the rest of us.”