Forged By The Sea: To My Friends In The Navy

Forged By The Sea: To My Friends In The Navy

From your biggest cheerleader...
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It's hard to write a heartfelt article about your friends when you can hear their voices in your head laughing and making fun of you. Truthfully we aren't the kind of friends that are regularly sappy and emotional together--if at all. But there are somethings I would like them to know and there's a lot of things I want everyone to know because they're too humble to say it themselves.

One thing you should know about me right off the bat is that I wholeheartedly support and cheer on my friends in every life decision they make. So when my boyfriend Andrew introduced me to his friends in the Penn State NROTC program, I was instantly their biggest cheerleaders. I almost instantly became best friends with one of these friends, Jess. (Hi Jess hehe) Jess is one of the few strong women in the NROTC program at Penn State and is the most badass person I know. Diego, Klo, and Creamer came right along after that. These guys are the goofy ones making everyone laugh but at the same time, they know when to be serious and get shit done. I never knew that Andrew joining NROTC at Penn State would bring along the greatest group of people I have ever met.

Now to the part, they're going to make fun of me for:

Jess, Diego, Klo, and Creamer:

To start off I'd like to thank all of you for your willingness and readiness to serve our country. Not many people have the guts to chose that route for their life. Your courage and bravery do not go unappreciated. It takes a special person to be up studying all night, wake up at 4 or 5 am, workout, do physical fitness tests, drill team practices, maintaining your GPA, and much much more. You are those special people and I am very proud of all of you every single day for that.

It's hard to think that you're halfway to graduation and commissioning fully into the Navy. It's even harder to think that someday we all may be in different parts of the world. And although that will majorly suck, I know it will be equally, if not more, difficult for all of you to pick up and leave. Therefore, for every holiday, half-birthday, birthday, Penn State football game, and important life milestones, you will receive a novel of a letter letting you know all the drama at home and a small box of treats. I have already spent an insane amount of time researching this on Pinterest so I'm pretty much an expert now. I hope someday those letters and treats from home will bring you comfort.

I can't say enough how proud I am of all of you. And when the day comes, I will be sure to wear waterproof makeup at your commissioning.

Cover Image Credit: Micheal Browning

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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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An Open Letter To The Friend Who Continues To Save My Life

No one knows me like you do.

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From the day we became friends, we have always had nothing but support for one another. Although we have only really been friends for about seven years now, I feel as if you have always been a part of my life. You know me just as well as you know yourself, and I understand you in the same way I understand my own thoughts and feelings.

You have never made me feel pressured, insecure, or unappreciated. The mutual respect we have for one another is unmatched. We can talk to each other about anything; from some of the most trivial topics to entire life philosophies. We have grown and matured together, and I couldn't be more proud of the person you are today.

We don't always agree on everything, and I always appreciate your fresh point of view, but I have never felt more in sync with another person than I do with you. We share the same birth month, the same age, the same home town, the same anxieties, and many of the same attitudes and values.

I feel as if you know exactly when I want to be alone and when I need company. Since we are both introverted, we understand that the other person needs time to recharge. And when I'm sitting alone with nothing to do, I always get a text from you asking to hang out.

In some of my loneliest, most vulnerable moments, you have been there. When I question how many true friends I really have, you are always sure to make your love for me known.

Through high school, and now college, we have experienced so many life-changing events together. Some that have taught us extremely valuable lessons, and others that have shown us incredible pain and how to grow from our lowest moments.

I want to thank you for showing me what life-long friendship looks like. Thank you for always understanding me and never putting too much pressure on me. I see an incredible future for both of us no matter where each of our lives takes us.

We will always share a unique connection that cannot be separated by any distance. But, for now, I'm glad you're only one text or phone call away.

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