Friendship is simultaneously painted to be fickle and everlasting. In the eyes of frustrated parents, friendship won’t last past our youth. In the media, a best friend will follow you straight into hell and back. We can’t ever seem to pick which is the truth.

Now I’m not saying that there aren’t seasons in our lives; people do come and go. Some stay, but for the ones that leave, I don’t think that their time with us is any less important.

There are people that I’ve loved deeply but grew apart from over the years. There are others that come in and out. There are also some that people that have stood the test of time, and I am confident will never leave.

Relationships change over time as our lives change too.

Friendship is special because it is exactly what you need at that time in your life.

Friendship is one of the only things that we, more or less, have complete control over. Some friends are acquaintances and familiar faces, but others, the impactful ones, wriggle their way into our lives so deeply that it’s difficult to recall a time without them. We choose who we want our friends to be, and I think that very much says something about who we are, where we’re at, and what we need.

I have this itching suspicion that the true friends that come into our lives and stay for awhile are here to teach us, and help us become something, too.

I’m thinking specifically about the people I’ve met the past couple years in college and my long-lasting childhood friends.

I guess it’s still hard for me to see the full impact people I’ve loved here have had on me because I’m still in the thick of it, but I can feel it.

These friends have helped me find myself. I have been so supported and wholly accepted and that has given me the courage to truly be myself and be earnest about who I am, too. I’ve been pushed to become a better version of myself in my daily life to face the adversity ahead. I’ve been taught to think outside the box and really think about things in a different viewpoint. I’ve been taught to be kinder, more selfless, more loving.

I have never felt truly alone here, and I think that speaks volumes.

I’ve come to terms with myself in ways I could never have alone.

A good friend makes you better. And for that, I am thankful.

I can only hope I’ve been this for my friends, too. My heart swells for each and every one of them.