Dear Mr. Scratchy,

It’s been nearly two months since you came into my life.

Who knew that your Facebook friend request would result in us meeting, offering me a ride back to school from the airport after winter break and develop an ongoing friendship?

God certainly knew that I needed a really deep friendship for this new year.

I’m mind boggled to have found a friend who has experienced almost exactly what I’ve been through.

We’ve both been excluded, faced depression and questioned our purpose in life. We’ve experienced God’s healing hand, but now we also have each other for support.

God gave you Apert Syndrome and God gave me Autism.

But despite our disadvantages we’ve pushed through and are following our dreams and passions in order to bring God all the glory.

Since I’ve gotten to know you I have realized you are funny, sassy, a gentle teddy bear, smart, athletic ( somewhat), inspiring and literally one of the most compassionate people I have ever met.

You’ve been one of the best guy friends a girl could ever ask for.

The way you approach people makes my heart soar with joy. You hug them, kid with them, and make them feel warm on the outside. Whether you realize it or not you’ve impacted them. What’s more is that I’m one of those people.

You motivate me to continue treating others just as Christ would, with nothing less than love. Since I’ve met you I’ve gotten to meet your parents, go on adventures to the beach and park, stargaze at the beach, have numerous deep conversations, vent to you about my frustrations and cry on your shoulder. We’ve gotten to talk about our dreams and aspirations.You got to celebrate my birthday with me, and I got to sit through six hours of basketball games to watch your passion for coaching/managing.

I am really blessed to have you in my life because you remind me that I’m God’s child. You love my mind; you love hearing me talk about my thoughts on current events and theology. I’ve enjoyed getting to hear your conversations as well. I love how we poke fun at each other, like how I call you Mr. Scratchy because you don't shave often.

You're a great friend to have due to your maturity. You are older and wiser. Part of the reason we get to have so many intellectual conversations is because you have the maturity to want to have these conversations. But the best part of having you as one of my best guy friends is the fact that you're only one call away. If I need a friend you're there.

Above all, these last two months have been amazing, and I can't wait to see where God will take us next! Your friend,

Chiara Elena