Friends: Your Chosen Family

Friends: Your Chosen Family

Thank you for being with me through the good, the bad, and the ugly.
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Growing up, I always heard the phrase "blood is thicker than water," and I always believed that family is the most important thing in the world. What I didn't know then was that the phrase is actually much longer and is meant to say, "The blood of the covenant is much thicker than the water of the womb," meaning that the promises and bonds that you keep between people you care about are more important than simply being related to a person.

I'm not saying that family isn't important, because it is. A family who loves and appreciates you is a blessing, and you should never take your family for granted. However, your friends that you make throughout life are also extremely important and should hold a place in your heart.

Personally, I have two loving, kind, intelligent people I get to whole-heartedly call my best friends. I have grown up with them, have watched them develop in to the people that they are now, and have truly come to appreciate every minute we spend together. These two people are the friends I have chosen as my family. I know everything about them, like they know everything about me. I know about their past, their present, and their future. Having friends that make you feel like you can be your true and absolute self is one of the finest pleasures of life, and these two people make me feel like that every day.

It's hard, sometimes, when you feel like you are alone and even your true family can't help you with what you're struggling with. Sure, your parents are always going to be there to offer advice to you and lend a hand when times get tough, but they may not always be able to relate to exactly what you're going through. Times like these are when I turn to my best friends, my chosen family. They always know what to say, even if it's just saying something to help me get my mind off of whatever I'm stressing out about.

All in all, I really just want to say thank you to my best friends for being my family away from family, if that makes any sense. It's always nice to have multiple people to turn to when you need advice, need someone to talk to, or just need someone to go on an ice cream date with. Thank you for putting up with me through the good, the bad, and the ugly. I don't know how I'll ever repay you.

Cover Image Credit: Sarah Fuller

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To The Girl Struggling With Her Body Image

It's not about the size of your jeans, but the size of your heart, soul, and spirit.

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To the girl struggling with her body image,

You are more than the number on the scale. You are more than the number on your jeans and dresses. You are way more than the number of pounds you've gained or lost in whatever amount of time.

Weight is defined as the quantity of matter contained by a body or object. Weight does not define your self-worth, ambition or potential.

So many girls strive for validation through the various numbers associated with body image and it's really so sad seeing such beautiful, incredible women become discouraged over a few numbers that don't measure anything of true significance.

Yes, it is important to live a healthy lifestyle. Yes, it is important to take care of yourself. However, taking care of yourself includes your mental health as well. Neglecting either your mental or physical health will inflict problems on the other. It's very easy to get caught up in the idea that you're too heavy or too thin, which results in you possibly mistreating your body in some way.

Your body is your special, beautiful temple. It harbors all of your thoughts, feelings, characteristics, and ideas. Without it, you wouldn't be you. If you so wish to change it in a healthy way, then, by all means, go ahead. With that being said, don't make changes to impress or please someone else. You are the only person who is in charge of your body. No one else has the right to tell you whether or not your body is good enough. If you don't satisfy their standards, then you don't need that sort of negative influence in your life. That sort of manipulation and control is extremely unhealthy in its own regard.

Do not hold back on things you love or want to do because of how you interpret your body. You are enough. You are more than enough. You are more than your exterior. You are your inner being, your spirit. A smile and confidence are the most beautiful things you can wear.

It's not about the size of your jeans. It's about the size of your mind and heart. Embrace your body, observe and adore every curve, bone and stretch mark. Wear what makes you feel happy and comfortable in your own skin. Do your hair and makeup (or don't do either) to your heart's desire. Wear the crop top you've been eyeing up in that store window. Want a bikini body? Put a bikini on your body, simple.

So, as hard as it may seem sometimes, understand that the number on the scale doesn't measure the amount or significance of your contributions to this world. Just because that dress doesn't fit you like you had hoped doesn't mean that you're any less of a person.

Love your body, and your body will love you right back.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Margliotti

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To My Best Friend Of 15 Years

You are my person.

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To my person,

I will never forget the first day that we met. It was the first day of preschool and my mom had just dropped me off. As I started to walk into the classroom I noticed that you were sitting alone on the floor crying. Not sure what to do, I went over to you and asked if you wanted to go play. Your face immediately lit up as we walked into the classroom and in that moment I knew that you would become my best friend. Ever since that day we've been attached by the hip and I wouldn't want it any other way.

April Roberson

Our friendship is the one true relationship that I can count on and for that I am forever grateful. This friendship of ours goes beyond our laughs and lake days. It's real. Through blood, sweat, and tears you've always been right by my side no matter what. You pick me up when I am drowning in pain. You cheer for me even when my ego is a little too high. You love me even when you should hate me. But, most importantly, you stand by me.

Our friendship is the perfect example of trust. You taught me that the right people can be trusted and will not betray you. No matter how dark the secret or how crazy the adventure, you never speak a word about me to anyone. You care about protecting my heart from the awful things in this world and when I am broken you are always there to pick up the pieces no matter how long it takes them to heal.

April Roberson

Our friendship has been a lifetime of happiness with a little bit of spunk. Not only do you encourage my crazy adventures, but you're always right by my side for each one. You keep life exciting and you make it easy. You are a true gift from God and I feel completely indebted to you for the role that you've played in my life. Our friendship is so special because it's full of our tremendous amounts of giving, sharing, and most importantly, love. There's not a day that goes by when I don't feel overwhelmingly thankful to have you by my side doing life with me.

So thank you, to my person. Thank you for always showing up for every little thing and making life so much better. Thank you for being my adventure inspiration and my lifelong travel buddy. Thank you for loving me unconditionally through the good, the bad, and the ugly. Lastly, thank you for being the one person that I can forever count on in this life time. I love you with my whole heart and I wouldn't want to do life with anyone else. You are my person.

Love,

Me

April Roberson

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