A Letter To All Of My Long Lost Friends

A Letter To All Of My Long Lost Friends

I am who I am today because of who we were yesterday.

Dear ex-elementary school pals, high school frenemies, or faux college sisters:

I hope you’re doing well. Quite like the seasons, I believe everything has a time and a place and as I’m sure you’re aware, not all good (or bad) things last forever. Ice cream melts, love fades and friendships time out. Whether we ended on a happy or sad note, I hope you know that I don’t resent you and your friendship to me is not overlooked.

We are all busy writing our own stories full of many characters along the way while we search for our own happy ending. However, moving on is always hard and sometimes change is difficult to cope with. Whether you were at the beginning of my story or recently intertwined, I want you to know that you had an impact on my life.

I often think of our adventures when I reflect on who I am today. You all have taught me many things. For example, I’ve learned you shouldn’t cry over lost stuffed animals because those can be replaced. Also, it’s never OK to cry over a boy. You can probably get revenge in some way, shape, or form. (Don’t ask what that means to a junior high girl). Finally, it’s always important to speak your mind and it’s okay if people don’t agree with you. I believe every person who has come into my life was put there for a reason. Whether it be for a lesson, a laugh, or even tragedy, I just want to make sure I take the time to say thanks for being around. So, if you ever see me around, I hope you say "Hi." Lost friendships are always upsetting, but I think it's even more frustrating to walk by someone you know and act like you've never met. Even a simple smile or wave would suffice.

Now, I'm not necessarily trying to repair our friendship. Some things are beyond repair, but that's OK. I can only hope we are both better people because of it. I am who I am today because of who we were yesterday. I hope you feel the same.

I hope I taught you how important it is to laugh at your mistakes and how sometimes failure is more impactful than success. I want to leave people better than I found them.

Life goes on and moves pretty quickly. Some friendships are able to stand the test of time and others are not. But regardless of the fact that our friendship didn't last, I hope you've surrounded yourself with a new group of friends who support you and build you up rather than tear you down. You truly deserve the best.

You were a good friend to me, and I hope you are good to others. Continue to smile, be kind and hope for the best. That's all any of us can really do.

Cover Image Credit: Twitter

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5 Ways You Can Be A Better Friend Today

Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither are relationships.

Rome was not built in a day, and neither are relationships. We all have amazing people in our lives that we cherish to no end. But, there are things that we all need to do better to make those relationships stronger and to make those people truly feel validated in their times of need. I myself have a hard time with each of these things, and in writing this, will hopefully be able to put my own words into action.

1. Text them first

This is a struggle that we all have with our good friends, we think thoughts like, “Am I being annoying?” “Is double texting okay?” or you’re being the stubborn friend who doesn’t want to have to be the first one to send a text. Either way, if you are truly going to make a person feel that you cherish their presence in your life, you MUST let them know. And how better to do that than a sweet little text from you? It doesn’t have to be anything more than a simple “Hey this thing reminded me of you” or “Hey I'm thinking of you,” to immediately make someone's day brighter.

2. Talk about yourself less

Friends always go to their favorite people for advice, or to vent, and if you are the chosen person in their life you need to shut up and listen! I say this because within other people’s problems we are sure to see things we have experienced in the past, and want to discuss them, but it is not always the time to do so. You have to be willing to truly hear what the other person is speaking about and make them feel validated in their problem, this is something I struggle with pretty hard. ALSO just make sure that your friend is asking for an opinion before you give one, because they may not have asked for one, and could take it in a way you didn’t intend for them to. Communication is key!

3. Actually, show up

Something that ALL friends do, is making plans and then bail on them. This can make or break a friendship if done too many times though. Sure there are legitimate excuses, don’t get me wrong, but just not feeling like it, will never be one of them. Get up, get dressed, and go see that movie, or have dinner, or just hang out. You make plans because you miss that other person, or because you need them, or because you don’t want to be alone, and when plans fall through it can be a huge letdown.

Bonus tip: Never bail on a friend for other friends, and if you do then don’t share it for the world to see because that can be the quickest route to hurt feelings and sad times.

4. Give them space when they need it

If someone you love is going through difficult times then always make sure to ask them what their needs are, and if they say they need some time apart then you have to respect that, especially if your friendship is the cause of their heartache. It is amazing what a little bit of time and space can do for a person because it gives them the time to reflect on their actions, what they are frustrated with and what they need to do to be a better friend as well. And when you reunite and talk things through, both friends will ultimately feel better about the relationship.

5. Remember small gestures matter

Little things can matter a lot to a friend, do something small for them once in a while. Recently, I woke up quite hungover from a night out on the town and my friend had coffee and a donut waiting for me, that small little move was something that legitimately melted my heard and made me remember how much a small gesture can mean to someone. Grab them their favorite candy when you hit the gas station, or cover them with a blanket if they fall asleep, do a cute photo shoot, any one of those things will remind your friend of the love you have for them.

Friendship is honestly one of the most amazing things about this life we live. You will undoubtedly come across more than just one soulmate in the short time you're given, and when keeping these things in the back of your mind, you can strengthen those bonds, making a friendship last a lifetime. Every relationship hits a bump or two, but it is what you do to make that other person know you care that will keep them around forever.

Cover Image Credit: @theswirlblog

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5 Ways To Keep From Becoming A Toxic Friend

We all know how to look out for toxic people, but are we remembering that for ourselves?

Toxic relationships in all forms are being discussed more and more. It is a necessary conversation for all of us to have. However, most of these articles and talks that I have encountered concern how to stay away from toxic people, but no one is concerned with how to not be a toxic friend themselves.

I find that rarely are people in our lives knowingly and intentionally trying to be a bad friend, significant other, roommate, etc. (although there are always some exceptions). Soon enough, a behavior becomes a habit and before you know it the relationship is off-balance. And as easy as it is for someone else to do this, it can be a simple mistake for you as well.

Here are some tips on how to avoid becoming a toxic friend.

1. Remember to ask questions

It sounds rather obvious, but thoughtfulness is significant. Take a moment everyday to check up on those who mean the most to you. Everyone feels more secure when they know that they are being looked after. Never forget to ask your pals the easiest question in the world: "How was your day?"

2. If you have the time, make the time

Not only should we check up on those that we care about, but we should do what we can to help them out. If someone has a big presentation coming up, ask if you can help them practice. A roommate has a stressful week coming up, so remove small stresses from their daily routine by making their coffee in the morning.

3. Do things with your friend one-on-one

It is easy to only go to events where most of your peers are going to be. We all have those friends that we only see when we are going out in a big group, but if they are important to you, let them know. Sometimes a quick coffee date or leisurely walk with someone is all that they need to feel better.

4. Pay attention and don't be afraid to dig deep

No one enjoys talking about the problems that are really bothering us, but that doesn't mean that we don't need to. If you think something is up, politely and respectfully ask if there is anything you can do.

5. Don't indulge bad habits

Just because a friend wants to do something does not mean that, as a friend, you have to encourage it. Don't let Becky call her terrible ex-boyfriend and don't let Mark skip his fifth chemistry class in a row. Being a friend doesn't mean agreeing on things, it means helping others do what is best for them.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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