• A ten letter word describing a mutual bond between people, usually (hopefully) filled with support and trust •

Think back to the first time you made a friend. You may have been as young as four years old. But why did you befriend this specific person? Did they help you out in tough times and give emotional support when needed? Maybe they just enjoyed the playground as much as you. The very first friendships we formed at early ages were all about convenience. They were reassurance that we wouldn’t sit alone at lunch, or be left plan-less on the weekends. They were the people we involuntarily grew up with, and found difficulty straying away from.

Upon receiving my high school diploma, I gained the courage to break off some friendships. I was able to let go of the “friends” who damaged my self-esteem, the “friends” who constantly judged my actions. I no longer felt obligated to hang out with the girls I never really had anything in common with. I regret wasting so many years on those who did not deserve my attention. I realized that I only held onto such friendships for comfort and fear– the comfort of being a part of a group and the fear of having enemies.

I now recognize I am entitled to befriend whomever I want– those who make me the happiest and those who only lift me higher. I’ve held onto a few friendships from my childhood/teenage years– only the ones worth keeping around. In addition, I have created new lifelong friendships. Along the way I discovered that it is not the quantity of your friends that matters, but the quality. I’ve been blessed to stumble upon some high-quality friends.

Trust and support are characteristics I value highly in friendships. I trust in hopes that it won’t be broken, and reciprocate the same trust back. I seek support and guidance when needed, knowing I’m willing to help my friends in return. We all deserve to surround ourselves with people capable of lifting our spirits up when we’re down. We all deserve to share good times and long laughs with people we care deeply about. True friends display these characteristics, are fun to be around and contribute to the positive evolution of ourselves. I’m lucky to have found such amazing friends to help me face this journey called life.

“We’re born alone, we live alone, we die alone. Only through our love and friendship can we create the illusion for the moment that we’re not alone.” 

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