It’s the Thanksgiving weekend in the United States of America, and I think it’s a good time to continue this topic. As mentioned earlier in my previous posts about gratitude (for your interest, you can search for the tag “love and gratitude”) , some people argued that Candy ending her letter to Albert “with love and gratitude” indicated that she didn’t love him as a man, but still as her older ‘brother’ or even benefactor. Their main reason was that there was no gratitude in a romantic relationship, which is not necessarily valid.
For example, in the article “10 Ways to Start your Day with Love and Gratitude”, it says that “to be successful at dating or anything for that matter, you need to have a sense of gratitude… the quality of being thankful, a readiness to show appreciation for — and to return — kindness…. appreciating the one you love more will deepen your commitment and help to foster a great sense of wholeness and fulfillment.”
As a matter of fact, Albert also expressed his gratitude to Candy in his letter to her when he was in São Paulo. He said (from spoilers of Candy Candy Final Story epilogue):
… If someone in the camp hadn’t kindly sent me back to Chicago … and if I couldn’t meet you —.
at that time, I was nothing more than a suspicious man without memory, with no identification.
But you didn’t leave me. You didn’t leave me even when you were fired from the hospital.
Your memories will surely come back, you kept my spirit up.
Just one time I have saved you, but you —.
I can never thank you enough.
I’m going to find out where your happiness lies.
I’ll certainly take a holiday and come to meet you when I’m back.
The first letter that followed was from Candy to him, and she said,
When will you come back from São Paulo?
When will you come to the Pony’s Home?
If you are so much thankful to me, I hope you’ll come soon….
Then apparently Albert had come to take her to Lakewood, and her letter to him in response was
I am — very grateful to my parents who have abandoned me at the Pony’s Home.
Thanks to that, I could meet you!
It is me who can never thank you enough.
Herein lies my happiness; in now.
Ah, I don’t think I will be able to sleep tonight again.
But, I wish Little Bert dream the most fantastic dream.
With love and gratitude,
In short, they got many memories in their hearts about each other, both laughter and tears. These memories were bound by love, and through sharing their feelings honestly for years, they were grateful to each other. From gratitude it sparked something deeper between them, something that surpassed their already strong friendship. It was a love that lasted for a lifetime.