What’s In A Friend? The Search For A Definition Of Close Friendship

The summer after third grade, I got a two-pendant necklace set. Each pendant was half-heart-shaped, one engraved with the word “Friends” and the other with “Forever.” I spent months strategically determining who would receive my half-heart. I decided on a girl at school who I liked better than anyone else I knew. I wanted to be her best friend. The problem? The role of her best friend was taken. “But it says ‘Friends Forever,’ not ‘Best Friends,’” I told myself every time I got cold feet. I still remember the moment I presented…

West Coast Friendship

To this day, I chuckle when I think about the fact that my college housemate, who has also become one of my closest friends, went to high school with me. A graduating class of one hundred and sixty-some odd students. A high school where everyone “knew” everyone. I chuckle because we never spoke during our four years of high school, and when we did first start interacting, it was via IM the summer between high school and college (insert joke about my thriving Gchat life here). What I find especially…

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Why I’m Changing The Way I Think About My Plans–Both Big And Small

Recently, I attended a wedding in Fort Myers. Yes, this Fort Myers, the one that Irma visited just weeks prior to that. On the phone with the bride two weeks before the wedding, I asked her how she was feeling. Having been hit hard by the hurricane, the wedding venue was closed down for repairs. Recognizing the first-world-problem-ness of my question, I assumed my friend was struggling with the reality that her meticulously planned weekend would almost certainly not go according to plan. And when you (ideally) only have one wedding,…

I Was Almost Suspended, But Instead I Learned An Unforgettable Life Lesson

I was seated one seat diagonally behind Jonathan that day. I remember it as if it was yesterday. It was a Monday. Nineteen years ago. He reached into his backpack and then pulled his hand out, his fist clenched around something. Click. Now there was something silver protruding from the fist. He turned around and held it up. We made eye contact. “I forgot I had this in my backpack,” he said without prompting, “I went camping this weekend.” He turned back around and I went back to my in-class…