What It's Like Having A Military Man As Your Best Friend

What It's Like Having A Military Man As Your Best Friend

It's hard, extremely hard, but I couldn't be prouder of what they're doing.
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Every person has at least one other person they care about. That person could be their mother, father, brother, sister, significant other, or best friend. Let's face it, we want to spend time with the people we care about and when we can't... it sucks.

Being born and raised in the South, it's not uncommon to see several people enter the military after high school graduation. Each time I went to graduation (to watch or participate) my high school principal always recognized those brave students for their dedication to their country. Up until my senior year, I felt sad for the loved ones of these students but didn't recognize the real emotions until I was the one experiencing them.

Several people in my graduating class joined the military and left for basic training around the time of graduation, including some of my best friends. My friends and I felt an absence when we hung out. We missed the ones that were gone. We looked for them in crowded parties, reminisced on past memories and awaited their return.

Most people would think that having a best friend in the military thing is the worst thing in the world. But like anything else in the world, there are pros and cons to having a best friend in the military.

Of course there are several things that make being friends with a military man/woman difficult. The distance and time difference is one of the hardest parts. For example, a very close friend of mine is currently overseas in Australia and the time difference between us is 13 hours. It is extremely difficult to ever hold a conversation because one of us is generally asleep when the other is awake.

Another difficulty is the lack of physical contact. When you have a friend in the military, it's highly likely that you will go long periods of time without seeing each other. Yes, that sucks. But thanks to technology available today, it is a lot easier to talk to our friends via FaceTime, social media and emailing.

While the time apart is hard on each friend, spending time together becomes much more cherished than it was in the past. The first time seeing each other after a long period apart is amazing. The first hug and hello becomes a memory engrained in your head forever.

You can't help but be proud of your best friend for everything they do for our country. So enjoy their company while you can and hold off on the goodbyes for as long as possible. Goodbyes are easily the worst part.

To all of the military men and women reading this, thank you so much for your time and dedication to serving our great country. We are the home of the free because of the brave.

And to my best friend, thank you. Stay safe and I can't wait to see you.

Cover Image Credit: Stephen Stewart

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To The Parent Who Chose Addiction

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

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When I was younger I resented you, I hated every ounce of you, and I used to question why God would give me a parent like you. Not now. Now I see the beauty and the blessings behind having an addict for a parent. If you're reading this, it isn't meant to hurt you, but rather to thank you.

Thank you for choosing your addiction over me.

Throughout my life, you have always chosen the addiction over my programs, my swim meets or even a simple movie night. You joke about it now or act as if I never questioned if you would wake up the next morning from your pill and alcohol-induced sleep, but I thank you for this. I thank you because I gained a relationship with God. The amount of time I spent praying for you strengthened our relationship in ways I could never explain.

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Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

The amount of hurt and disappointment our family has gone through has brought us closer together. I have a relationship with Nanny and Pop that would never be as strong as it is today if you had been in the picture from day one. That in itself is a blessing.

Thank you for showing me how to love.

From your absence, I have learned how to love unconditionally. I want you to know that even though you weren't here, I love you most of all. No matter the amount of heartbreak, tears, and pain I've felt, you will always be my greatest love.

Thank you for making me strong.

Thank you for leaving and for showing me how to be independent. From you, I have learned that I do not need anyone else to prove to me that I am worthy of being loved. From you, I have learned that life is always hard, but you shouldn't give into the things that make you feel good for a short while, but should search for the real happiness in life.

Most of all, thank you for showing me how to turn my hurt into motivation.

I have learned that the cycle of addiction is not something that will continue into my life. You have hurt me more than anyone, but through that hurt, I have pushed myself to become the best version of myself.

Thank you for choosing the addiction over me because you've made me stronger, wiser, and loving than I ever could've been before.

Cover Image Credit: http://crashingintolove.tumblr.com/post/62246881826/pieffysessanta-tumblr-com

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Four Quarters Will Always Be Better Than Ten Dimes, And I'm Not Talking About Spare Change

Quality over quantity any damn day.

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"You would rather have four quarters than 10 dimes, 20 nickels, or 100 pennies," is a phrase that at first glance would seem to just be about money. But it actually contains a deeper meaning that could definitely serve as good advice when it comes to the friendships you have in your life.

As an ambivert, I have always found myself happier when I surrounded myself with a large group of friends. It gives you a sense of belonging, something that is a proven innate human desire. Having large groups can be fun, but they also equally have the chance of being toxic for you. There's no point in surrounding yourself with individuals if, at the end of the day, they don't make you happy. Often times you'll hang out with people just because you crave company, but not THEIR company. There is a very important distinction.

Don't let your loneliness or your desire for more friends allow you to be consumed into toxic friendships. Because I have been there and done that. Many times. It's not a fun experience. It took me time to learn, but I have learned the valuable lesson of less being more. When you eliminate extraneous beings from your life, you have more time to focus on your more important relationships and the most crucial one of all, the one you have with yourself.

I am very blessed to say that people that I am close to in my life genuinely care for me and my happiness because this was not always the case. It takes a lot of trial and error, and also greatly impacts your mental health, but finding the right friend group for you is definitely life-changing.

Choose your friends wisely, you don't want a wallet full of useless change.

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