I’ve been on this Earth for 20 years—that’s 20 years of relationships I’ve formed. Some of those relationships I have kept to this day, some have faded out and disintegrated into nothing. For some reason, for the past week or so, I’ve been thinking about these relationships I have in my life. Each one is different, and I wouldn’t want it any other way.

Relationship Type One: People who provide endless love and support.

My parents fall under this relationship, as do my siblings. A few friends also fall under this relationship and I couldn’t be luckier to have those people surrounding me. Being constantly lifted up when my spirits are low, encouraged to be my best self, and told to go for any opportunity I may be interested in has definitely helped shape me as a person. These people, the ones who love me no matter what mistakes I make and consistently tell me to try new things (despite whether I fail or succeed), are the people who give me the courage to fight through life and go after what I want.

Relationship Type Two: People who want to make me happy no matter what.

You guys, you never fail to put a smile on my face. When I’m around you, I smile more than usual. My body aches from laughing so hard. It almost seems as though your main goal in life is to make and keep me happy. Thank you for sending me pictures of cute dogs when I feel upset because you know that always puts me in a better mood. Thank you for showing me funny memes when I need to take a break from life and just laugh at what the Internet has produced. Thank you for telling me silly stories about the ridiculous events that have happened to you because that’s just how life is at this age. I hope I provide the same kind of happiness for you as you do for me.

Relationship Type Three: People who give me advice, even if I don’t always want to hear it.

You keep me grounded. When I feel like being rash, you force me to actually think through the situation and evaluate it. Will it benefit me or will it set me back? Thank you for prompting me with these kinds of questions. I like to think that I’m pretty good at evaluating situations, but when I need extra help, you’re always there to give your input. Sometimes you need that voice of reassurance, or sometimes you need to hear another side. Without you, I would only have my viewpoint on certain situations and my view on things would be skewed. Thank you for consistently giving me words of wisdom, even though it may not always be what I want in the moment.

Relationship Type Four: People I can do absolutely nothing with and still enjoy myself.

You people are of a special kind. I can sit in complete silence with you and not feel uncomfortable. I don’t feel the need to scramble my mind in search for conversation. I don’t feel the need to consistently be doing something to entertain us. Doing nothing with you is perfectly O.K. by me, and that’s sometimes exactly what I need.

Relationship Type Five: People I can tell anything and everything to.

You guys, well, I’m sure you know who you are. You are the definition of my right hand, my go-to, my partner in crime, my person. Thank you for handling me at my worst and loving me when I’ve hit rock bottom. You’re there for me in every way humanly possible. When we’re separated, I can call you and talk for hours without being bored with the conversation. It doesn’t matter where I am because when I need you, you’re there. Thank you for always listening to me, even if my problems may seem petty or I just want to hear myself complain. We are each other’s outlets, the ones who understand each other the most. Everything with you is easy and I don’t feel judged for being myself when I’m around you. You give me so much to be thankful for.

I hope that throughout your own lives you make lasting relationships that provide you with joy and make you want to be a better person. I know I’ve made a few of my own.