2018 proved to be easily one of the hardest years of my life so far, if not the hardest.
Time and time again, the universe tried my patience, compassion, and strength, and time and time again, I found myself under various forms of stress and pressure.
2018 was a year of tremendous loss for me, both in the familial and friend aspects of my life.
Conversely, I was also incredibly fortunate this year to have met and befriended all of the wonderful people that I did. So, to the friends I made in 2018- this is for you.
If you are reading this and wondering if you count, I can assure you that you do.
As mentioned, 2018 was an extremely difficult year for me, and I could not have done it without all of the supportive, loving, and motivating people around me. Whether we became friends in dorm hallways, boring classes, intramural teams, or through a friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend, many amazing people were brought to me throughout the course of the year, and these people helped me through some of the hardest times I have ever experienced.
Whenever I found myself feeling down, I was able to turn to any of these people and have my spirits lifted instantly. These friends brought me, and continue to bring me, a world full of laughter- laughing in a dorm room until 4 am, laughing in the caf loudly enough to warrant a few dirty looks, and laughing in the presence of people who don't want to see me that happy. No matter the circumstance, I am fortunate enough to have countless people who can always get me to crack a smile.
Laughter truly is the best medicine, and I am so grateful to be spending my time with people who always encourage it.
I am also incredibly fortunate to have friends who have acknowledged the hardship I dealt with this year, and who have been kind enough and willing enough to be here for me every second. Some of these friends were people whom I had barely spoken to prior, some were those whom I had grown distant from, and some were people whom I had only recently met, but all offered me support and for that I am awestruck. It's not every day that you come across an abundance of people who are willing to put themselves aside even just for a moment to check in, or offer a word of kindness, let alone be there for you every step of the way. It truly isn't something easily found, which is terribly sad, but true. I am so grateful to be one of the lucky ones.
2018 brought me friends who taught me how to live. It brought me friends who easily filled, and exceeded, the shoes of those who had decided to turn their backs and stab me in mine. It brought me friends who laugh with me, cry with me, complain and gloat with me. Friends who dance like idiots with me and who couldn't care less who has a problem with it.
2018 brought me friends who made me realize how true friends are supposed to be and feel.
2018 brought me friends who made me feel comfortable being myself in a way that I hadn't been before, and friends who didn't, and don't, judge that.
It is terribly cliche and overused, but 2018 was both the best and worst year of my life.
It brought me the worst hardships, struggles, and bumps in the road, but it brought me the absolute best, best people.
To every single friend I made in 2018, I am so grateful for you and lucky to have you, and I can't wait to see what 2019 brings us. Thank you for being here.