A Thank You Letter To My People Back Home

A Thank You Letter To My People Back Home

"We're friends, real friends. And that means, no matter how long it takes, when you finally do decide to look back, I'll still be there." -Meredith Grey
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To my people back home,

As I am sitting in my dorm room, I'm thinking about one thing. I miss you. I miss every single one of you. From my best friends who know me like the back of their hand, to my dance studio, and my family, I miss you all. It's been quite a while since I have seen and talked to some of you, and I want to apologize. The transition into college has been a whirlwind. You are the people who mean the most to me, and I wanted to take some time to tell you just how much I appreciate each and every one of you. I am blessed to have many people who have made a large impact on my life, and I have so much to be thankful for from each of you. So here is a start...

Marie, Abby, Shayla, and Carly. You have been constants in my life from day one and you four mean the world to me. You saw me through every milestone, heartbreak, success, and failure and you stuck by me through it all. I will never be able to put into words just how thankful I am for you. From laughing to the point of our sides hurting, to sitting with each other while we ugly cried, you ladies have been my rock. You will always be my rock. It is something truly incredibly to have people you know will be with you for life. Thank you for everything you do.

My dance family. My teachers, students, and lifelong friends. You are the greatest support system I could have ever asked for. You watched me grow up, and loved me through every stage (even the awkward stage). You gave me a place to be completely unapologetically me, and I thrived. The studio is my home and will always have a place in my heart. Chrissy, I especially want to thank you for giving me something so special. You have created something that is so much more than just a studio. It is a community, and it is a family. The amount of love and support in the atmosphere is incredible. This sounds clichè, but without you, I truly do not know where or who I would be today.

And now finally, my family. The craziest, funniest, most supportive, and loving people on this earth. You are my favorite humans. I am truly so blessed to have each and every one of you. You laid the foundation for who I am, building me with every life lesson and piece of wisdom. Because of you, I know that I am never alone. You are the people who believe in me when I don't, the ones who pick me up when I'm broken and of course, the ones who are there to offer to beat up whoever hurt me (Victoria). Even after listening to my horrible story telling all of these years you somehow still love me so I obviously lucked out. "and then... um uhh" sound familiar? We may be a dysfunctional bunch, but the end of the day you are my people and you mean more than anything to me. Thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I love you.

And with that being said...

Xoxo, Gossip girl (Would it have even been me if I didn't end with this?)

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An Open Letter to the Best Friend I Didn't See Coming

Some people come into your life and change you forever—thanks, bestie.
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Dear best friend,

I wasn't expecting you when God placed you in my life. I had my friends. I had my people. I wasn't exactly open to the idea of new meaningful friendships because I had the ones I needed, and it didn't seem like I really needed anybody new.

Thank God that was false. Sometimes you meet people and you just know that you're going to be good friends with. Sometimes you meet people and you realize that there is no such thing as chance. I think God has a funny way of making it seem as if the things that happen to us are by chance, but honestly, that’s a load of crap. If the biggest moments of our lives were left up to chance, then I believe that would make God out to seem as if he didn’t care. It would make it seem as if He was truly abandoning me and making me face some of my most important seasons fully isolated. But you, best friend, are a true testament to the fact that God doesn’t just leave such important aspects up to chance. Thank you for taking a chance on our friendship, and thank you for allowing me to take a chance on what I didn’t realize would be the most impactful friendship in my entire life.

Thank you for being real with me. Thank you for not sugar coating things. Thank you for telling me when I have a bad attitude. Thank you for loving me through my mistakes. Thank you for supporting me in my decisions, even if it isn’t always the decision you would make. Thank you for wanting the best for me, and for making that your true intent behind the words that you say to me, whether they be constructive criticism or encouragement.

Thank you for being a goof with me. Thank you for putting me first. Thank you for seeing the importance of our friendship. Thank you for making time in your schedule for us to just sit and do homework, eat Mexican food, or sit on the porch and listen to music that emotionally wrecks you.

You’re one of a kind. You’re a shoulder to lean on. You’re a safe place. You’re a free spirit. You’re rough and tough, but your heart melts for the people you love and it’s obvious. You’re more than meets the eye. You are worth getting to know. You are worth loving. You pursue people. You are passionate about your future. You are everything that a person needs, and I really thank God that for some reason you continue to choose to be in my life. Thank you for literally dragging me up my mountains of fear when I want to stay exactly where I am at and wallow in the sadness. You bring joy—true joy—wherever you go. You are my best friend, confidant, and biggest fan. You will be the Maid of Honor, Godmother, and fun Aunt.

I used to think lifelong friendships weren’t really a thing. It just seemed like people always grew apart and forever was never a point that was attainable. Best friends forever is a cliché phrase that is continuously overused nowadays (sometimes, I even used to make light of it), but thanks for making that a reality. You are truly the best friend I could have asked for. So thank you for it all. You make life more fun, and I couldn’t thank God more for making an incredible human, friends with me.

I love you, pal!

JQ

Cover Image Credit: Julia Dee Qualls

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A Letter To My Ex-Best Friend

I wish things had ended differently.

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You were my best friend for eleven years. We grew up together, hit milestones together, and did everything together. We helped each other through our parents' divorces, the struggles of high school, mental health breakdowns, and everything else that was thrown at us. Whenever I needed a pick me up, you were the one I went to.

You were a part of my family. You could walk right into my house and no one would even bat an eye. You fought with my brother the way I did and messed with my parents the way I did. You would even text my sister. Most of my family vacations included you. I got into some huge trouble with you, but we also thrived together.

We helped each other choose outfits. I dragged you along to all my dates because I was way too nervous to go alone. We had so many nights of endless laughter over things that really weren't even funny.

You were my person.

But high school changed things. We began to gravitate towards separate friend groups. No more good morning texts, no more venting about the annoying girl in your first period that had a crush on the same boy as you. I stopped hearing about your boy drama.

And one day it stopped completely.

When we saw each other in the hallways, we pretended we didn't. Our memories faded and became just that; memories. We stopped asking each other's lunch plans and making plans with each other in general. We once knew so much about each other we couldn't even tell where one person started and the other ended. But now we're strangers.

And boy, do I miss you.

A lot of people feel bitterness towards their ex-best friends. Angry at the way things ended. I just feel a longing for the way things once were. Yes, our friendship didn't really end in the most civil way. But that doesn't take away from the years of tears, laughter, family vacations, and countless memories we made.

I don't feel angry at you, I just wish we never lost each other.

I think about you a lot. Whenever I see you in passing or on social media, I think about what things may have been like if we never parted ways. I think about how strong our friendship would have been. And it honestly breaks my heart.

I want you to know I have no hard feelings towards you. I know things will never be the same, but I will cherish our memories forever.

Thank you for being such a huge part of my life.

Thank you for not only helping me grow up but growing up alongside me as well.

Thank you for getting me through the tough times, from my parents' divorce to something as simple as a middle school break up.

Thank you for being my person for my entire childhood. You are the reason I'm here today and I will never forget that.

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