9 Crucial Life Lessons I Was Only Able To Learn From My Best Friend

Two female friends are taking photos with a vintage camera and a smartphone at the beach.
Kendra Kamp / Unsplash

1. Falling in love isn’t just for romance.

I remember the first time I ever hung out with you. We were studying for a high school final exam in the children’s section of a Barnes and Noble with our mutual friend. Well, we hadn’t quite gotten to the studying yet, we were still in the gossiping phase of our study session. I remember how freaked out you were because you and your sister had joined the high school softball team and you hated softball but you joined on an impulse and wanted nothing more but to quit. I knew exactly how you felt, having just gone through the same thing during basketball season. It was so funny to me that someone else would freak out about something that most people would think is nothing, but it was like in that moment I knew we could freak out about the same things together for the rest of our lives.

2. I shouldn’t take myself too seriously.

Our friendship grew solely out of the fact that we are both experts at making fun of ourselves and each other. This in combination with eating McFlurries in a Planet Fitness parking lot swearing that we were going to start going for more walks starting Monday.

3. That guy I liked really wasn’t that great.

Yes, I’m finally admitting you were right. I know I get mad when you look out for me on these things because the truth is, sometimes it’s easier to be mad at you than it is to be mad at myself (or the dumb boy in question). You have made me feel better about myself than any guy I’ve shared a Friday night with and I’m sorry that I don’t always admit when you’re right about them.

4. A relationship doesn’t always mean friendship exclusion.

I won’t lie when you first started dating your man I was a little jealous of him. Suddenly, you two had your own inside jokes and your own rituals and I had to accept that this stranger (to me) was becoming a part of your life, and consequently, mine. You always made room for me though, even when we watched a scary movie and I had to climb onto your side of the bed. You showed me how to balance a personal life and a romantic one before I ever even needed to think about it. You gave me a sneak peek into the highs and lows of a committed relationship and instead of setting me up with someone or pushing me to date, you celebrated my independence and encouraged me to hold out for someone amazing. I’ll never be grateful enough for this side of you that I love so much.

5. Apologies are key.

I’ll never forget the time we fought over the phone. It was a very make or break moment for our friendship. I remember specifically that even though I was so mad at you, the moment you started crying, pain ripped through me and just completely knocked out any frustration I had previously felt. I was used to doing awesome comedy routines about people that made you cry and being the one who had caused it left me feeling way worse than whatever it was I was mad about. I remember us both apologizing because this friendship will always mean more than being right. After that, I think we both could agree that our friendship could survive anything.

6. Busy schedules and distance mean nothing.

People make time for what matters and at the end of the day, this friendship will always be what matters.

7. Maybe I’m not as bad as I think.

One of the greatest things about you is when I text you some discouraging b.s. that someone said to me and without fail get a multi-paragraph, bulleted presentation via text message on why I should forget the nonsense and believe in myself. Also, you’re kind of funny, because you’re really good at making me see the humor in all of the lies and self-depreciating crap. I don’t know why everyone can’t be like us but I guess that’s why we’re so gosh darn special.

8. Never come from a place of “you owe me.”

One of the many great dynamics of this friendship is neither one of us have done that “I did this for you so you should do this for me” stuff. If anything, it’s more like “you gave me your last french fry last time we hung out so lunch is on me” and then we do that little play fight that cashier’s hate where we simultaneously thrust our credit cards at them. You are one of the most generous people I’ve ever met in my life and I definitely try to be more like you in that respect.

9. The best things in life really do come when we stop looking.

I definitely didn’t go into the Barnes and Noble children’s section with my three-ring binder expecting to begin a lifelong friendship. But here we are. It takes a lot of love, patience, and understanding to maintain any type of relationship but you have shown me that none of the “work” will ever outweigh the true treasure it is to find someone worth sticking by. I’m so glad I have you to freak out about stuff with for the rest of our lives. TC mark

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