An Open Letter To Every Friend I've Ever Encountered In My Lifetime

An Open Letter To Every Friend I've Ever Encountered In My Lifetime

Thank you all for making me who I am
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To the friends who I grew up with

I cherish every friend I have been lucky to have; however, I have a big place in my heart for the ones I grew up with. You people are the ones who taught me everything and made me into everything that my parents didn’t. Good or bad, I am thankful for that. My childhood was amazing because of the people beside me who grow with me. You were the people I went through every year of grade school with. We went from nap time together to snack time to our girl time that really meant “Let’s talk about cute boys time.” You are the friends who were probably the truest or realest friends I have ever had, because back when we were so close I never had to worry about how I looked what I said or did. Trust me these were the most embarrassing times of my life (there are photos to prove this) but it didn’t matter because we were young and we were all weird and embarrassing. We thought we were the funniest people alive and thought each and every one of us would remain friends for a lifetime or at least be each other’s bridesmaids. I just want to say thank you for teaching me what it’s like to have true friends, good times and giving me amazing memories. You taught me what it’s like to have an all-nighter sleepover, that I am the wild friend and how to be myself. You guys are truly going to stay in my heart forever even if we have been apart for years now. You will be the ones I tell my kids the best stories about. And for what it’s worth our pretend wedding in my basement in 5th grade allowed us all to be at one of our weddings together, which really was a dream come true even if we were 15 years too early.

To the friend who isn’t always around but will always be there for me in some way

There are so many of you and that makes me so happy to say because we never let our friendships die. No matter how far or long you are away we always able to pick things up right where we’ve left off. I appreciate you so much because I know both of our lives get tough and we get caught up in it and can’t always find the time to hang out or even communicate with, but when we do it is the best catch up and we always end up feeling better and refreshed. We can talk for hours over Facetime and our stories go into crazy over time with maybe too many details but the best part is you always are able to interrupt me and give me your two cents on the topic. I love that I am able to trust you with everything I tell you. Even though you aren’t always the first person I run to vent or for advice know I still appreciate each and every bit you can give me because you are a great and valued friend.

To the friend who always got me in trouble

I don’t know if the trouble you got me into with my parents was worth the crazy things I got into with you, but you’ve sure given me some awesome stories. I don’t even know how you’ve learned or how your brain is wired but it’s wired in a way that even made me, a little innocent girl, become rebellious. I used to think you were the coolest person I knew and in fact wanted to be just like you. You were and still are so laid back, easy going and everyone seems to like you as a person. Although you did seem to have a sort of side effect it’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt, or at least that’s what my parents would say. You never hurt me, however I would get into situations where I knew I was being dumb, but hey I didn’t care I was doing what a cool kid would do and I had fun while doing it (sorry mom and dad). There was the time I got my phone taken away for weeks because I videotaped a kid hitting a paper airplane smack dab into our substitute teacher’s face, all because you told me to. I served detention for a week because of this but I thought it was totally worth it. Thanks for sprucing up my middle school record and making me a total bad ass when I wanted a little rebellion in my life, maybe now one day my children won’t think I was a lame kid when I tell them all about being the class president. And now even though we’re not friends I see some of myself in you, the sweet friendly girl and you in me, the wild side. Thanks for letting me live life on edge.

To the friend who grew to be different than me

I’ve had many friends but never one who made me question so much as you did. We had lots of common interest and lots of common talents and that is so great that we could share these things but a lot of the times I felt like we weren’t quite on the same path. I want to let you know I was challenged by this for a while, I thought I myself had to try harder to understand where you were coming from or for you to notice there was a difference between us. I want to let you know I was always 100% honest with you because even if we didn’t always see eye to eye I could never hurt a friend. It wasn’t that I necessarily wanted our friendship to end but I think we both grew into a state of mind where we knew there was a place and a time when our friendship was great but we just weren’t feeling it any longer and that’s okay. We’ve had some arguments but we never lost respect for each other and we ended on a graceful note which deserves a high five for being teenage girls. I want to let you know that we’ve had some great times and I’m happy with the paths we decided to take even though they were different. I’m happy for you and I know there was a reason you were in my life.

To the friend I met and clicked with right away

You are so like me and I love you for that. Just kidding I love you for so many different reasons and we love most of the same things to which gives us so much to talk about and makes it so easy. Speaking of, our relationship is easy, you just get me, I get you and we don’t have to worry about pointless arguments because we know what triggers each other. Right when I met you I knew we would be great if not the best of friends. You have me saying the same phrases you say and sometimes I even catch myself doing it. When others are around us they notice it too. The find us annoying because we’re so much alike but we find them annoying because they are so different than us. I know you will be my friend for a long time because we already know everything we both like and agree on it and if we don’t agree it doesn’t stop us. I don’t think anything will stop us not even our husbands or our crying babies whom of both will be best friends too. Thanks for being so much like me and clicking right into my lifestyle.

To my ex best friend who I wish was still close to me

This is hard to write and still hard to fathom the distance that has grown us so much apart. We used to be two peas in a pod, for a long long time and what I thought was a never-ending time. Our parents rooted for us because they’re best friends just like you and I once were. But others were not rooting for us, because we were the annoying friends. The overly obsessed are they even their own person type of friendship. People looked at me and they were looking at you too. We did the most ridiculous things together but I mean ridiculous in all the good ways. Never have I ever been able to be so myself with any other person before. You were practically my sister and your family was my second family, I miss them so much and wish our separate ways didn’t put a fork in the road for all our relationships. I have to thank you for teaching me a lot especially towards the end. You became kind of a bitter person in the situation we ended up in and instead me sinking to be like you once again I had for once found a big part of myself that had been missing. Without your friendship, I have learned a lot especially how to be an individual in which I will still thank you for. Other than that, you’ve taught me how to laugh when I didn’t think I could, how to choose a girl’s night being the best option over anything else and how to have a friend that feels like family. It’s sad that our friendship ended but people move on in life and I have accepted that. Maybe we’re too much alike or maybe we’ve grown to be too different, regardless I’ll have nothing but good things to say about you and hope one day our paths will cross again.

To my main clique I have now

If there is any group of friends on this earth that resembles the sex and the city friend group it is us. We have the perfect combination of the sassy friends, the sweet motherly friends, the wild friends and the professional mature friends. All together we definitely have our fair share of gossip and opinions we throw at each other but it always ends up being used in all the right ways. Sometimes we gang up on each other and dangle embarrassing stories over one another’s heads, but it’s all just for our own laughs. There’s nothing quite like you people I have ever come across anywhere else in my lifetime. Sometimes we have trouble finding a time for all of us to get together but that just makes our time together even more precious. Right now, it’s college and jobs separating us but we’ll find our way to catch up on breakfast dates. Years from now we’ll be doing the same only it will be babies and careers and we’ll meet up at the bars. I know now because we have been able to handle all of us being in separate moments in life like high school and college, that we will be able to make it through any kind of distance and amount of time apart. You will always be my cup of tea and will be exactly what I need to feel like I am at home. I can’t wait to continue our little traditions together like having spaghetti and pear lemonade dates and going up north for the summer. Never have I ever found a group so different who fit together so well, and never will I ever let go.

The friend who is actually family, my sister

You're the one friend that no matter what I can't get rid of. Sure, some people aren't as close with their siblings but why wouldn't you be? You were the person who I knew I had as a friend from the get go all the way to the grave. I knew that no matter where I was I would always have a friend because anywhere I would go mom and dad would drag you along with me. You were my friend when I thought I didn't have anyone else you even let me hang out with your older cooler friends when I didn't want to be with mine. You were the friend who would let me raid your closet any day, well actually "let" is a loose word for me to raid without your permission. You were the friend who I would and always will look up to because I think you're awesome; you are my role model. You're the friend that no matter what allows me to say we're best friends forever. You're guaranteed the position of my maid of honor, the aunt of my children (the blood related kind of aunt) and the whatever else you want to be because I won't get rid of you ever. And since we've been so close I think it's safe to say that in this point in life you won't get rid of me either. I could never thank you enough for everything that you have taught you throughout my nineteen years of life, and I'm still learning, still looking up to you and I always will. Thanks for being you, but more importantly thanks for being my best friend.

Cover Image Credit: Sierra Gardner

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8 Things I Have Not Thanked My Best Friend Forever For In, Well, Forever

Thank you for always being the best.
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1. Being there through it all, even if you're not "physically" there

We can't always be together, but you have never completely "left" me behind and have been there with me through thick and thin and I am so grateful.

2. Being my biggest cheerleader

Thank you for not only being there through the bad, but also celebrating my victories with me. I can always look forward to telling you good news because I know you'll be happy right along with me.

3. Answering my "important" phone calls

Whether it's a "he texted me back!!!" phone call, or an "I found a gray hair, please help!!" phone call, you pick up the phone and hype up with me no matter what.

4. Being selfless, and going above & beyond to make sure I know I'm worthy

This explains itself and I am so grateful for that.

5. Brushing my hair when I don't feel like it

Okay, this probably sounds silly... But it's the greatest struggle to brush my hair and I'm glad you do it for me sometimes!

6. For being there through all of my mini-crises

You already know what I'm talking about here...

7. For talking me out of things

If it wasn't for you talking me out of things, I'd probably have quit my job, be dating a horrible guy, got my eyebrow pierced, etc.

8. Making me a part of your family

I'm too lucky to have you all as my second family.

Cover Image Credit: Personal Photo

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to My Best Friend, and Role Model

How my best friend's Instagram account has made an enormous impact on my life

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Dear Bella,

I am so lucky to have you in my life. I wish everyone had a best friend like you to be inspired by. The powerful, genuine thoughts you have recently started sharing on social media have inspired me to look at life in a different way. Your honesty in every post shows how strong you have become in the short year that I have known you. You are simply an amazing human being and I do not know what I did to deserve someone like you to be in my life.

I met Bella over a year ago through my long-time best friend, Zoie. Bella was going through a bit of a rough patch, so Zoie and I went on a run to take her a "comfort slurpee" from Speedway. Since that day, she and her family have been the most welcoming household I know of besides my own. From the rave-themed birthday party we hosted with only the three of us in attendance, to our simple movie nights and dinner dates, you have been one of my go-to gal pals since that very first day.

Fast forward to June 2018: in a little over one short month, my sweet friend, Bella Malatesta, known as iam.becoming on Instagram, has gained almost 4,000 followers on her new blog celebrating her personal awakening. She has turned a simple Instagram account into a personal blog, featuring her inspirational and thought-provoking views and feelings. Yes, there are already plenty of "Instagram girls" who are fun to follow for their aesthetically-pleasing feeds and good looks, but Bella's account is special. With iam.becoming you get a glimpse into Bella's beautiful soul, as well as all the usual perks of following an "Instagram girl".

Bella's posts always begin with "I am." which is a powerful phrase that is created by her initials. This phrase has become something of a mantra for both Bella and her followers. "I am." inspires you to think in such a way that you feel empowered to be anything you want to be.

"Unapologetically Me" is my favorite post that Bella has far created thus far. I highly suggest that anyone who reads this letter takes a look at that post. As the name suggests, the post reflects on how Bella came to realize that it is okay to be yourself, an idea that many girls struggle with as young adults. Bella's inspirational posts have already inspired many girls in our local area. She has received many many direct messages and comments of encouragement from friends and some people she has never even met. The support she is receiving is unreal and I am so proud of the person she has chosen to be.

I have read all off her posts word for word and not one has disappointed me. I am so lucky to know a girl who has chosen to live her life in a positive way instead of focusing on the negatives. It takes a strong, independent person to have the confidence to post these very private thoughts, all with the knowledge that she could be judged for those very thoughts by her peers.

Bella, I encourage you to continue iam.becoming for many years; see where it takes you and the incredible platform you will build. Keep growing beyond the beautiful person you are today. I am so thankful to have a continuing friendship with someone like you. "I am." thankful to personally know Isabella Malatesta.

Love, Brianna

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