Allow Yourself To Care

Allow Yourself To Care

To become spring, means accepting the risk of winter.
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When I was a junior in high school, my french teacher had us read Le Petit Prince. Even though it's a children's book, the entire story is filled with really valuable lessons (leading me to believe either French children have the emotional maturity light years beyond their actual), but the one lesson in the box that really stuck out to me was when the little Prince befriended a fox. The little boy didn't want to befriend the fox because he knew he wasn't staying in one place for long, but the fox told him how important it was to make real, genuine connections even if it means getting hurt. The fox said:

"Of course we will hurt each other. But this is the very condition of existence. To become spring, means accepting the risk of winter. To become present, means accepting the risk of absence.”

As an angsty seventeen year old, reading this really affected me. At this point of my life I didn't have an rock-solid relationships outside of the ones in my family. I didn't put my trust into anyone because I was so scared to care about someone to the point that they could hurt me. I kept all of my friendships at arms-length.

I was more concerned about maintaining a certain control over my feelings then I was about making genuine relationships that I could rely on. The idea of giving someone the power to hurt me terrified me.

But I wanted to be like that fox in the book. I wanted to love people without the fear of them leaving. I didn't want to be held back by my fear of relying on someone else. So I made a conscious effort to let go of the thoughts that held me back. I made myself promise that I would put faith in other people to not hurt me, and even if they did, at least I was allowing myself to be emotionally open.

Then I made some really good friends. Like really, really good friends. They were kind, fun and put up with all my quirky habits. I didn't have to think about everything I did and said when I was with them, and every time we hung out, I left with a smile on my face. It was the first time in a long time that I wasn't scared to admit I really, really cared about someone (or in this case, multiple people). And three years later, they're still some of my best friends.

Since I started allowing myself to love with my whole darn heart, I've been a lot happier. I have really great friends both at home and at college. I have friends I know I can rely on and trust. I'm able to tell someone I love and care about them without being scared they don't feel the same way about me.

I'm not scared of being hurt. Yes, I've been hurt. Yes, I've cared about people who didn't give me that same care in return. But I've survived, and if anything, it made me realize how great it is that I'm so loving and open to others.

I used to think caring about a someone "too much" would leave me feeling vulnerable and weak, but now that I care and love people as much as I want, I've never felt more free. If I had one thing to say to seventeen year old me, I'd let her know the fox was right; making genuine connections is always worth it.


Cover Image Credit: Jolie Delia

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.
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Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.


7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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To The Best Friend Every Girl Should Be Blessed Enough To Have

You definitely deserve all the love.

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I have not written this letter, but it has been on my list of "to write" for forever. She keeps asking when I will write one about her and every time I tell her, soon.

Well here it is. The truth on why it took so long? No words seem to do everything justice. No matter how I put them or how I want them to sound, the page always makes them look weird and they always sound lame.

But finally, here it is. Best friend, this one is for you.

First and foremost I will start with a holy cow. We have been best friends for only a short time because who knew your "in school friend" from all those math classes would actually turn into this? We put off hanging out outside of school for years, and finally, after suffering through all that algebra we decided enough was enough.

I wish we had sooner.

I wish I had gotten more time with you before we both moved away to college - but ill take whatever time I get with you because well… you're incredible.

Thank you.

Thank you for finally agreeing to hang out with me.

Thank you for listening to every rant ever - whether it was a paragraph long text, a 2 hour FaceTime call or an hour-long car ride.

Thank you for ordering planners with me and spending nights decorating them with me (we are such losers).

Thank you for letting me become a part of your family.

Thank you for going to Friendly's, IHOP and Target at the most ungodly hours.

Thank you for encouraging me in everything I do, and stopping me from making bad decisions.

Thank you for telling me the truth, despite if it hurt me or not, I know now you will never lie about your feelings towards someone (LOL).

Basically, thank you for everything you have done for me. You have made me a better person and you encourage me to be my best self every single day.

Moving on I want to make it clear how incredibly proud of you I am. I love getting texts from you about your love for your classes, and how you want to be president of this club and president of that. How you help out kids, and how you host events. I love hearing about your major and the classes you are so incredibly excited to take. Watching you be so passionate about what you are doing and becoming makes me want to feel the same way in everything I do.

I hope someday my kids are your students because, in your hands, I know they can change the world.

Last but not least, I love you. And you're stuck with me.

Love,

Your forever number one fan

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