THE POWER OF FRIENDSHIP

To the ones that heard me when I never said a word, this is for you.

There is something so special about relationships that teach you what it means to care, love, be kind and, most importantly, show up when someone needs you the most.

Throughout my 23 years I have learned a thing or two about friendships—what I look for in a friend, and what they look for in me. Though not all of my friendships have been successful or have stayed with me, I have learned something from every single one. But, it is the ones that have chosen to stick by me that have shown me the true power of friendship. Through times when I chose to close myself from the rest of the world, they showed me support just by simply reminding me of their friendship.

This is what it is all about, we may not always be able to do everything our friends ask of us, but it is simple reminders of the friendship that help. The "remember when we did this," or "I am thankful for you because of this," goes a long way when a person is feeling lost, incapable of sharing emotions, or feels like no one is around to guide them or support them.

I have always invested a lot into my friendships, and will continue to do this for the rest of my life. To me, if you are a true friend, you are family, and I take the term 'family' very seriously.

Family, and true friends, know your weaknesses but choose to show you your strengths instead. They pick you up when you are down by reminding you of your unique qualities—the ones that make you who you are; the ones that they have grown to love.

Through my friendships I have found out things about myself that I would have never known of had it not been for the people in my life who pointed them out. A true friend shows interest in your life, but they also give you the advice you need to hear. They do this without being sensitive to your feelings and, although this sounds bad, if your friends don't tell you the harsh truth you need at times, who will?

I urge you all to find friendships like these. Friends that will challenge you to be the best version of yourself.

Friends that are there for you through your darkest times, and who are there to spend your brightest times with you as well.

Friends that will show you what it means to live a life full of love, laughter, and fun. But, most importantly, friends that love you unconditionally—through your triumphs, and through your failures. They are there to cheer you on, or lift you up.

To my dearest friends: I hold you all in a special place in my heart and will show you nothing but love, support, and kindness through our friendship.

You have shaped me, and have given me the confidence I lacked when it came to pursuing my dreams.

Seek out friendships that give you a reason.

Anyone can show up when you are happy. But the ones who stay by your side when your heart falls apart, they are your true friends.