Long Distance Friendships In College

Even When Your Plans Change, A Good Friendship Can Stay Strong

With a friendship like mine, distance can't keep you apart.

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Growing up in Alabama, just like a lot of others, The University of Alabama was my top, and only, college choice, and lucky for me, my best friend since fifth grade had the same plans. Spending every day of high school together, we would plan our future together at the big university, discussing what dorm we would room in, how we would decorate, and our majors.

A lot of high schoolers dream of moving away and starting their future, but for me, this dream was extra special because I would get to do it all with my very best friend.

Every so often we would visit the university for competitions and conventions. It was the only campus I had ever really visited, but I could definitely see myself as a student here. But then again, something seemed to be holding me back. Shortly after one of my visits, I really started to wonder if I could call this place my home.

I started researching "best schools in Alabama for journalism." As I scrolled down the list, one school stood out to me. Troy University. I clicked on their website, and I was immediately intrigued. I became infatuated with a small and spirited university. I followed the university on Instagram and read articles written by students and something just clicked.

I knew I had a dilemma to face.

What about all the plans I made? How was I going to tell my best friend I chose to go to another school?

I remember briefly mentioning to her that I would be visiting Troy over the summer. I could see the confusion on her face, but she reassured me that if I loved Troy, that's where I should go to school.

The closer it got to my visit, the more nervous I felt. I had a feeling this was my home, but I wasn't ready to accept it yet. But whether I was ready or not, the day came for my visit, and my nerves slowly turned into excitement.

With every mile passing, I knew I was getting closer and closer to my future.

Every building I passed on campus was beautiful, and everyone I talked to was kind. At that point, I knew I was somewhere special. I told myself, this is it. This is where you belong. Troy made accepting this very easy, but the hard part was yet to come. I knew I had to tell her.

I worried about the conversation, but I knew it was time to tell her. To my surprise, when I told her I had to go to Troy, she told me how happy she was for me.

Instead of talking about how we would spend the year, we started planning how we would spend Christmas and spring break, when we will visit each other, and how the 2-hour drive to see each other.

Plans change and life moves fast. Sometimes things don't always work out the way you plan, but that's OK.

Although we won't be attending the same school, I really do get to do it all with my very best friend, because when you have a friendship like mine, distance can't keep you apart.

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An Open Letter To My Unexpected Best Friend

You came out of nowhere and changed my life for the better.
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“It's so amazing when someone comes to your life and you expect nothing out of it, but suddenly, there right in front of you is everything you ever need."

-Unknown

Dear Unexpected Best Friend,

You were the person I never thought I would speak to and now you are my very best friend. You came out of nowhere and changed my life for the better. I can't thank you enough for everything you have done to shape me into the person I am today. You've taught me what it means to be selfless, caring, patient, and, more importantly, adventurous.

You don't realize how much better my life has become and all because you came out of nowhere. I didn't see you coming. I just saw you on occasion, and now I can't see my life without you in it. It's funny how life works itself out like that. Our unexpected friendship filled a hole in my life that I didn't know existed.

I don't even remember what life was like before you came along; it most likely had a lot less laughter and spontaneity than it does today. I can call you about anything and you would drop whatever you're doing to help me in any situation. You know when I need encouragement. You know when I am at my best and when I am at my worst. You always know exactly what to say.

SEE ALSO: 8 Tiny Lies Every Young Woman Has Told Their Best Friend

I couldn't have found a better friend than you if I tried. We balance each other out in the best way possible. You are most definitely the yin to my yang, and I don't care how cliché that sounds. Because of you, I've learned to stop caring what people think and to do my own thing regardless of any backlash I might receive. You are my very favorite part of what makes me who I am to this day.

It's as if I wished up a best friend, and poof — you appeared right in front of me. I am so beyond blessed to have you and I wouldn't trade the world for all our memories. Thanks for coming out of nowhere.

Love you forever and a day.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Medders

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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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