Awesome

She’s awesome. My best friend is completely well and truly awesome. There’s hundreds of reasons, and tonight, they’re whizzing around my head. I miss her. I miss her warmth, her hugs and her laugh. I miss her silly faces and her ability to feed me waaaaay too much sugar. I miss revising with her, or being able to turn before an exam begins and watch her mouth ‘good luck’. She’s awesome, and she’s done so many awesome things. It’s beautiful. She’s beautiful. And there aren’t many beautiful people in this grey world, so she is very very special.

She’s my hand while talking to teachers.
Started to instil a positive mindset into me.
Given me the cutest birthday presents.
Carried me home whilst terribly drunk, and sat and held my hair at the toilet later on.
Wrapped me into a protective bubble in her arms when I was telling her the darkest secrets of my past.
Drawn pictures with me late at night.
Taught me to run.
And came back to run the end of the 10K with me so we could finish hand in hand.
Made me friendship bracelets.
Helped me to overcome fears and fight off demons.
Taught me that if you love someone enough, you will do anything to help them.
And in that, taught me that it’s always possible to forgive. The one time I thought she would never forgive me, she did.
Took me to a pub quiz where I knew nobody, had three glasses of wine on an empty stomach, got dizzy, and made and fed me pasta when we got home.
Rescued me from the flute lessons where I just broke down due to stress.
Taken long post-exam drives with me in the countryside.
Took me for coffee after my flute exam.
Stayed up all night just holding me while I sobbed.
Sometimes, she cried with me.
Went on a night out with me in London.
Made me laugh all day long.
Allowed me to be buzzing and happy despite being hundreds of miles away.
Supported me through my grandad’s illness and death.
And lit candles with me to remember him afterwards.
Stayed up late watching movies.
Accompanied me to my charity hair cut so she could laugh and take photos.
Always remained calm no matter what I have to say.
Eaten copious amounts of food.
Ran around Bristol like madman with me.
Waited with me at 5am outside Matilda in order to get tickets.
Made me feel brave enough to face giving blood.
Always believed in me.
And in doing that, she’s taught me to believe in myself.
Took me to visit my friend in an eating disorder clinic.
Made me cocktails on my eighteenth birthday.
Got tipsy and danced with our favourite teacher on her eighteenth birthday.
Taught me to trust again.
Talked me through lots and lots of panic attacks.
Been proud of me when nobody else was.
Allowed me to feel pride in the odd time that I proved her wrong.
And still helped me every single time I cried tears of frustration over things I couldn’t do.
Most of all, she’s been the big sister I never had. She’s been here for me every step of the way and I firmly believe that she will be, forever. I’d do the same for her, always and forever.

This friendship started with a shared secret. It was a secret that belonged to neither of us, but a secret that had a massive effect on our lives. It brought us to be extremely close, and have thousands of memories. I often wonder if she can remember like I do, if I’ve had an effect on her like she’s had on me. I wonder if she can remember things that I cannot.

But it doesn’t matter, because even if there’s things I’ve forgotten, the warmth in my heart when I think about her is enough. The ache I feel when I’m worried about her or haven’t seen her for months is enough. The smile I get when I’ve spoken to her is enough. It’s enough to know that she’s awesome. For that, I cannot thank her enough.

I truly hope that her exams go well. I want her to know that I miss her and love her, and I’m never ever going to let her go. I know these are just words, but she’s too far away for anything else. She’s awesome. And I wish she’d never forget that, or forget how much she means to me. I can’t wait for summer.

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When Thank You Isn’t Enough

It can be tricky to say thank you, sometimes. It can be hard to find the words to express what we really mean, because so often, when we say thank you, what we mean is so much more than that. Someone holds the door open for you, you say thank you. Someone’s says ‘bless you’, and you say thank you. Someone tells you that you look pretty today, you say thank you.

People always say that actions can mean much more than words. But in this case, that’s still not right, is it? Because holding the door open for someone is an action, but yet they still get the same response as those who spoke. That’s because it’s not about the actions just being actions, it’s about the meaning behind those actions. Someone holds the door open because they’ve been told it is the polite thing to do. When someone helps you confront your biggest fears, the sentiment is very different. For me, that’s a little tricky to cope with, because I want to say thank you. But thank you isn’t enough. But I struggle with words, and don’t know what to do, so I say thank you again and again. Now thank you means nothing anymore. It’s in the rut, with sorry.

But this time, thank you wasn’t enough. And I tried saying it again and again. But repeating the words didn’t make them mean any more. But maybe I can explain myself now. I hope so, because I need to say a proper thank you. And I need to explain why that thank you means more than any that I’ve said before. Because she deserves that much; what she did for me was really special.

A few weeks ago, my best friend allowed me to confront my biggest fear. For anyone who’s been around here for a while. They’ll know that I’m largely terrified of alcohol. Whilst I’ve come to university and learned slowly to cope and ignore, the idea of getting drunk was, and still is, very much a no go zone. But this friend promised me a long time ago that we’d do it together. And my lord, we did. Big time.

She’s always helped me with alcohol related fears. From just after we first met when she saw my terrified face at the concept of being asked if I’d like a drink by her mother, to an hour or so later on that same night, when in a room on our own, she made me take just a sip of that drink. A few years later, we ordered wine in a restaurant in London. Both under age (although me only admittedly by a couple of days), they handed us the wine menu, so I let her order, and I drank my first glass of wine. A few days later, I let her mix cocktails on my eighteenth, and feed them to me on the presumption that she’d look after me. My parents told her to watch over me. It was fine, I didn’t get drunk. I was too ruled by fear. Ironically, a few months later at her eighteenth, her parents said the same to me. Little did they know that the situation would be completely reversed. That night, her eighteenth, was the first time we got tipsy together, or as I kept saying ‘I’m just a little bit drunk’. My first ever jager bomb was bought by my favourite teacher, and we well and truly danced the night away. We crept into her house much later than we were supposed to and ate birthday cake before heading to bed, and waking up very early, and rather hung over the next morning to revise. There’s been ups and downs since then, which we won’t mention. But a few weeks ago, she came to visit me. She stuck to that promise that we made that when the visit happened, we’d get drunk together, and she’d keep me safe.

It’s fair to say that I was absolutely bricking it. Well, truly, and completely shitting myself. Somehow, she forced me to hold it together, and we made it down to prees and pizza. The rest, as they say, is history. Mainly because I can’t remember that much of it. From what I’m told, I danced like a complete idiot, was VERY stubborn that I would NOT get onto the strip pole, we stayed later than my course friends, asked for our favourite friendship song to be played – twice, and I spurted a lot of microbiology (I’d had the exam that day). Microbiology wasn’t all I spurted, either. I was six approximately six times over the course of three hours, and she made me change into a new set of pyjamas. We didn’t get to bed until half five, and I woke up at 8.30am shitting myself because I couldn’t remember what I’d done. Subsequently, I woke her up to ask, too. I was so so scared, it’s too difficult to explain.

But now, I can laugh about it. Whilst I’m in no hurry to tell my parents, it’s the kind of thing that happens to teenagers all the time, and I’be been told that it happens to everyone at least once. I’m just glad it happened when my best friend was there to carry me home, remove my necklace, put me into bed, and tie my hair back. And it sure as hell won’t be happening again. It’s the kind of thing that will be completely forgotten about until I ask her to make a speech on my wedding day. Which I will be asking her to do. My lord, she’s got better stories than anyone else!

And whilst I have begun to confront my fears, it’s plain to see that thank you is just not enough. She may be training to be a doctor, but this girl hates sick. Yet she propped me up at the toilet, and she made sure that I was okay. I know for a fact that I cannot think of one other person who would do that for me.

But she knew I was afraid, and she knew that I feared that I would get hurt, or do something that I would regret. But she made it safe. She made it okay, and she allowed me to do something that a year ago, I didn’t think that I’d ever be able to do. I’m so grateful for that, you cannot even imagine. She’s the only person that could make me safe enough to not worry about what I was drinking. Nobody else will ever manage that, I’m certain. I always struggle with words, and to say exactly how much it means to me. But it does mean the world. If she didn’t truly love me, she wouldn’t do that for me. They say that our friends are the family we choose, but it’s not just that. I don’t think we chose this friendship, because when we met, we seemed the most unlikely pair. We were thrown together on a school trip that left our worlds colliding, and we’ve simply never looked back. I’m proud to say that she’s the sister that I never had, and I’m finally confident that she will support me and care for me until the end of the world, no matter what choices I make or fears that I have.

And I’d do the same for her. Always and forever.

So thank you. And I really mean that, more than ever, and more than anything else in the world.

Second Marriage

Yesterday, my best friend’s mum got married to the man that I have always called my best friend’s step dad. I think for a long time, I didn’t realise that they weren’t married. It seems to make sense to me.

I wasn’t at the wedding. Heck, I’d never expect to be, are you crazy!? But while I’m very happy for them, and I hope they enjoyed their day so much, it’s left me a bit lost, and my emotions are up in the air. Seeing her snapchats throughout the day, I don’t quite know what to make of it all. No, I’m not jealous. No, I’m not angry. I already told you that I was happy for them. You forget that I’m not five, and my emotions just aren’t as simple as that!

You see, I think I’m the child of a second marriage. I don’t know that for sure, because my parents have never told me so. But I am. If I really think about it, I know I am. But I’m pretty good at hiding from it, because I don’t like to think that my parents lie to me. It’s not something that I think about.

But seeing and hearing of a second marriage has been enough to trigger those thoughts. To trigger the memory of the day I found the evidence, and to trigger that uneasy feeling that my parents haven’t told me the truth for my whole life.

And that’s a little tricky to think about, because it’s a concept that my brain cannot comprehend, and rejects. It’s a bizarre concept, and I don’t know how I feel about it. I want my parents words to be the truth, but I’ve seen with my own eyes that they are not. I’ve tried to think of every possible explanation for what I found, but there simply isn’t another, and that’s a bit weird.

And the more I think about it, the sillier I think I am. So what if I’m the child of a second marriage? I still know who my mum and dad are, and that’s more than many people in this world.

But I guess that I just don’t like the lies. What if I have a sister or a brother that I will never get to meet? That’s a very sad thought, because families are supposed to be happy, no matter how disjointed they can seem at times.

But I guess that I’ll have to accept that I will never know. Because I’m never going to look again where I looked before. But I want to know. I think I do, anyway. But I’m not sure, really. It’s something that I’d never thought about before. I’d just blocked it out, until the subject of marriage came up again.

And now it’s all over, I hope that I can go back to my world of pretend once more.

Back to School

There are days (although I’ll admit that they’re becoming less frequent) when I want nothing more than to go back to school. Today is one of those days.

The difference between school and university is that at school, there’s someone who cares. You may not always realise it, but there’s always someone watching out for you, making sure that you’re okay.

It’s not like that at university. To lecturers, your face is lost in the crowds, and when you’re feeling down, it’s all too easy to hide in your room. You can put on a smile when you need to cook, and blame the sleepiness on a hard night out to your friends in lectures. It doesn’t matter that it’s a lie, they’ll go for it. They don’t know you any better. It’s not their fault, I know that. I don’t want them to know that I’m ill, because I don’t like being weak and people fussing over me.

But at the same time, I guess I need someone to notice. Sometimes it makes you feel loved to hear someone ask ‘are you okay?’

And recently, I’m in more pain than I’ve been in for a long time. Some combination of on going problems, a new pill, and iron deficiency has left me in a pit of headaches, sleepiness, nausea, and other grim symptoms. I’m struggling to get out of bed in the morning, and not allowing my eyes to close in lectures is basically impossible. I should see a doctor. But I won’t go again, because he might tell me things that I don’t want to hear.

But I don’t get ill. I pride myself on how little schooling I’ve missed through illness, my ability to persevere and cope, unless I’m literally throwing up in the toilet (which hasn’t happened for years!). But I’m struggling right now.

But nobody knows me well enough. Nobody will check that I’m okay or make me stop for a few days, and so the cycle is endless, the headache is back, and I’m even more behind with work than I was before.

However much I may have hated the fussing over me, the endless questions in flute lessons about how I was coping, or teachers giving me a sympathetic smile after I messed up yet another exam, at least someone knew me. They knew when I wasn’t okay, and they didn’t always have to ask questions. Because I was not just another face in the crowd, I was a human being, and I’d like to think that they truly cared.

There’s some days when I plan what A Levels I could take if I went back, and what I’d do with all my time.

Tomorrow, I’ll probably wake up dreaming of the future, and so grateful that those teachers ever helped me to get where I am. To be who I am. To be studying this course. Tomorrow, I’ll realise that dwelling on the past helps no one.

But I think a part of me will always miss my school days.

I’m going to help cure cancer.

I guess that I’ve always had an awareness of cancer. From an age much younger than most, I knew what cancer was and how it affected people, and what it did to lives. When I was very young, both my Nana Winnie and Auntie Audrey died from cancer. I don’t remember it much, I was too young to remember anything about Winnie, but I remember Audrey. She lived a few doors down from my nan, and she always spoke to and played with us as kids. She gave me a lot of old coins once, and I think they’re in a pot in my nan’s bedroom now. I still wasn’t old enough to really understand, but I was sad when she died, and I used to sit and count those coins for a long time afterwards.

When I was twelve, a very close family friend who’s the same age as me was diagnosed with bone cancer. It was three years before he finally got the all clear, and even now, three years after that date, he’s still having treatment to try and fuse the bones in his legs. He’s had plaster casts, operations, and metal frames with pins. Even when the cancer has gone, it doesn’t ever go away, really. It still follows you and haunts you and impacts on your life, forever.

Recently, my mum is being tested for cancerous cells, and that worries me a lot. She doesn’t tell me much of what is going on, and I panic about her well being much more than I should. The doctor told me a few months ago when I went to see him about an issue, that although the chances are minute, there’s a chance that even my symptoms could be a sign of cancer. That thought haunts me every day, and it doesn’t go away.

If you’ve got to my age and never known anyone who’s had cancer, you’ve done amazingly well. I don’t know at exactly what point I decided that I wanted to go into cancer research. It was only a couple of years ago that I found out what pharmacology actually was, and then I was dead set that it would be my career. Somewhere in the mess that has been the past few years, I decided that I wanted to go into cancer research. Not once have I wavered from that decision. Especially with my family friend suffering for such a long time and at such a young age, cancer has had a massive impact on my life. I’m so determined to do well in my degree, because I want to make a difference. Of course, one person cannot save the world on their own, but if I can make a positive impact on the lives of others, then I will. I could never ever be a doctor or a nurse, that’s an extremely challenging profession both physically and mentally (oh, I don’t do blood or needles which doesn’t help!), so being a pharmacologist is my way of making a difference.

And then today happened. I found out that one of my ex A Level teachers has a brain tumour. When I heard this news, my panic stress induced freeze attack hit me faster than it ever has before, and I couldn’t control it. I overheated, and I fainted. Luckily, I was sat down and so I didn’t injure myself, but even I was a little shocked. Even now, I’m surprised that I reacted in such a way to the news. After all, she’s only a teacher, right?

Let me take a little side track here, for a second. Bare with me, because hopefully it will allow me to explain. Back in my last year of middle school, I had to give a fifteen minute presentation about my heroes. At the time, I didn’t really have any heroes. In the end, I chose my cousins, my friend suffering from cancer, and a random flautist that I’d never heard of but a quick google search provided me with the answers. I was very much a ‘do it on my own’ kind of person, and I still am now. I didn’t look up to anyone, because I couldn’t see anyone around me that I thought was worth looking up to. Perhaps if I’d have thought a little harder, I’d have come up with a better idea, but I didn’t want to think too hard because the more personal I made it, the more difficult it was going to be to give the presentation. Presentations are hard enough anyway, and make me panic enough anyway without me talking about something personal on top of that! Now, five years on, things are a little different. Although I’d still be horrified by having to give a presentation about my heroes, I’d have some to talk about. I don’t like the word ‘hero’ because it’s glorified. The people that I look up to and want to be like don’t deserve that title. To me, they’re more than ‘just’ heroes. They’re not drawings in a comic book. They’re real people who have made a difference to me. It’s a little difficult to put into words, but the reasons I appreciate them are very personal to me, and a little difficult to explain to the outside world. I guess it doesn’t matter anyway, because my understanding of the word hero is bound to have changed since I was thirteen.

If you haven’t guessed it yet, without revealing the whole list, that teacher is someone who would be on it. To me, she’s not ‘just a teacher’. Her name would be there in a brightly coloured pen with something along the lines of ‘nosy, laughable, caring, and can give a bloody good motivational speech!’ She impacted on my life in my A Level years more than most of you could even imagine. From the first few months of AS when I was dragged to her room in tears by my best friend because A Levels were all just too much, all the way through my grandad’s illness when she excused me from homework (I had NEVER missed a homework deadline in my life – except once when I was eleven. I had done my RE homework, but I just left it at home. I was horrified.), to my A2 mocks when I failed and she offered to give me extra tuition at lunch time, from the times that I arrived late to her lesson to sit on my own in total silence, and she asked no questions, to the hundreds of times that I stood in her room after a lesson staring blankly and on the verge of tears, desperately trying to force myself to say something that I was hiding, weather it be my friend’s eating habits, my state of panic, or something else. I never did say, and I never did tell. Until leavers. I don’t want to talk about leavers, or what happened. It’s a story I’ve told before, it’s a story that tears chunks from my heart, and it’s a story that I try my best not to think about. But what she did that night and the days that followed in order to help me cope was unbelievable. She sat next to me on that coach and held me and hugged me when all I was trying to do was ignore her and push her away, but all I really needed was someone to do exactly what she was doing. She spoke to me the next day, on DofE, to check in, and to give me one of those fabulous motivational speeches. I saw her a few days later and it was just the same. A few months later, she sent me an email and arranged to meet me for coffee in the summer holidays to check on me, to give support, and to give me one final speech before exam results day. She still emails me occasionally now. I knew she hadn’t been in school recently, and I knew she’d been ill.

I didn’t ever dream or expect that she’d have cancer.

It doesn’t matter how educated I am about the disease, what I know, or what I want to be, when there’s someone you care about that gets ill, it hits you. Hard. She may ‘only be a teacher’, but I do care about her, lots. And she cared about me. I’d like to think that she still does care about me. On reflection, I know she’ll be a fighter, and I really hope she’ll be okay. It was a shock when I heard the news. Again, I don’t have the words to describe it, I just hit freeze mode.

The news may have knocked me out today, I may not have revised as hard as I perhaps should have this afternoon.

But four hours after I was told, and on reflection, I know one thing for sure. I’m now even more determined to go into cancer research. I’m determined to do well in these exams, and this degree. I’m determined to be awesome, just like she is, and like she always told me that I was.

Reflecting on 2014

I’m not sure that this is the most sensible idea that I’ve ever had. It’s been a difficult year, a year of hopes and dreams and heartache. But maybe it’s time to try and draw a line under this year, and to move on, to let 2015 be a new year? Or at least, to try to. To actually do so will probably be nearly impossible, but surely there’s no harm in trying, right?

I don’t remember every little in and out of 2014. Lots of it is a blur, except the end of June, leavers. I’ll try to give this post a little structure though, when so many of my posts are not. I’ve decided, that whilst it might make me cry and rip my heart into a thousand pieces, that I should reflect on 2014 month by month, by reading my old blog posts.

First though, I’ll think about NYE last year, the first time I drank alcohol (albeit two glasses of WKD). I sat with my parents and chilled, and whilst didn’t think that I was up to it, I did the complete opposite this year. A meal and night out in town with my friends, I have got a stomach bug I feel awful, and I was also rather nervous about fitting in, and what if I wanted to come home before the taxi was booked? It was fine though. In fact, it was more than fine. I can have fun if only I can let myself relax. Breathe.

January, then, before I career completely off topic. I only wrote three posts in January, the most poignant of which was about parents evening, and failing biology. I wasn’t good at writing down my emotions then, and while I was bricking it, it doesn’t seem too obvious from the post! Maybe I’ve improved a little, then?

February was the result of only two posts, one of which was about my new task to get swimming in an attempt to get fit. I loved the early morning swim sessions with my best friend over the next few months, and I wish that we could have that time together again.

March saw the first time that I ever really wrote about my thoughts on my best friend having an eating disorder, in a post entitled ‘All I think about is food…’ It’s something I’d been worried about for a long long time before, but it was then that I realised exactly how serious it was, and exactly how responsible I was, as the only person who realised this. It was then that it started to kill me and crush me and everything around me got harder and harder until it just became all too much.

April saw a whopping nineteen published posts! While I was slowly finding ways to cope with school and my parents, my best friends eating was ruining me. It was killing me, destroying me, and I wasn’t sleeping at night. The next few months were a haze of pain and support, and it was hard. I’d do it again though, a million times over. I know that in the future, I’ll have to do it again. She’s not okay, and I want her to trust me.

May was the month of my first exam, and I was still consumed by my best friend whilst also struggling with my own problems. I thought about giving up, but I decided that I had to find my voice. I thanked my best friend for helping me out, and for a tiny little while, I let myself ride the wave of happiness.

With exams in full swing, June had me starting to think about moving away to University. Sadly, there was the dreaded leavers dinner, which still makes me feel sick and my stomach flip with guilt. Even though it was the right thing at the time, it didn’t help and I can never ever forgive myself.

DofE, and music tour whipped me up in July, and what happened at leavers escalatedI (although still helped NOTHING!). Summer began, I had some fun, but I still worried endlessly about results day.

August was all about results. I met a teacher for coffee to discuss how things had been since leavers, and I got my results and got in! I still worried about my friend as I realised how bad things still were. I knew that I couldn’t give up, but I still found things hard, and cried an awful lot!

September saw goodbyes and he beginning of University. It was all a bit of a blur, and I guess that there isn’t much more to say than that!

I wrote 28 posts in October, so of course, I don’t have time to reflect on them all. I was finding uni hard and my best friend had stopped eating again, we fought and argued as I struggled to get to grips with the new life. It wasn’t long though before we were friends again, and we’ve been doing amazingly ever since. I knew moving away would be hard, and I think this blip only made us closer, and remember what we’re here for.

I was struggling with doctors tests at the start of November. I was getting mixed need from home too, and it was hard. I wanted to protect my best friend, and I worred again about what would happen if she died. I was counting down until I saw her again, and I was settling into university. I may not have blogged about it much, but i was beginning to feel like I fit in, even if only just a tiny little bit.

And now, it’s the last day of December. The year is over, and it has been long. Very very long. I was very very accidentally late submitting an essay at the start of this month. As the weeks passed though, my thoughts moved to getting home, and reflecting on what I’d learnt in my first semester at university (I love post!). Eventually, I did get home, whoooop! Yey! I survived!

It’s not even an easy year, and writing this has broken my heart and made me want a hug once more. But I wouldn’t take it back and change it, because everything I did was because of someone I loved or something I cared about. That’s important. There was reasons, good reasons for the tears and the pain. There was happy times too, even if not too many, there was enough. That’s not what it’s about though, it’s about support, and learning that we can get through anything, if only there’s someone by our side to hold our hand and help us along the way.

Happy New Year. Here’s to 2015, however good or bad it may be.

We stick like glue.

When I first started to draft this post, I was counting down the hours and calculating percentages in time of how long I still had to wait. It was less than two days until I saw my best friend again. I didn’t even know how to contain myself, and if the tension wasn’t at an all time high at home, I’d probably have been walking around with a perma-smile on my face! I was excited, but a little nervous too.

There wasn’t any need to be nervous, because as soon as I saw her and wrapped her up for a hug, I relaxed. Instantly. And within moments of settling into Nero’s, it began to feel like we’d never left. No, it wasn’t perfect. Nothing about our friendship ever has or ever will be perfect, but that’s not the point. It doesn’t matter that it wasn’t the fairy-tale reunion. There was smiles. There was laughter. There was chai, and at one point, there was giggling-until-you-cry. It was special, and it’s the best day that I’ve had in a long time.

You see, it’s strange when after so much anticipation, it feels like you’ve never been away. But isn’t that what’s important? To just slip back into it like nothing has ever changed is very very special. Our friendship is unique, and that’s because she’s a very amazing girl. I don’t think it’ll be the same when I see my other friends later in the week, but with her, it’s like nothing has changed. Even our visit to school felt ‘normal’ once we’d both gotten over the silly ‘what the heck are we doing?’ flip!

We may have grown up a lot over the last few years, and look an act very differently, but everyone who knows us knows that we’re close, and our friendship is special. Just via skype she can ‘happy haze’ me so I’m smiling down to my but. I mean, seriously!? But it’s built on foundations of trust. That’s all. This friendship started with a secret that didn’t belong to either of us, and from there, it’s only grown. Not many people can say that, can they? I wanted to entitle this post ‘We stick like glue’, and whilst I think that I still will do so, I’m coming to realise that actually, our relationship isn’t like glue. It’s not glue, because glue (or good glue at least!) doesn’t come unstuck. But we do. We move away, we head to University, we study, and we take exams. We fight and squabble just like sisters, and sometimes, we even make each other cry. We care though, and in the end, we’ll always come back to one another, and be there for a hug, or to lean on. I love her like a sister and nobody will change that. Perhaps it would be appropriate then to describe us as magnets. Whilst the opposite poles and views may repel sometimes, it’s much more preferable to be stuck together. It’s easier that way, and much stronger, too.

I’m not good with words, and whilst she says she liked my pictures and pins them to her wall at university, I get the impression that it’s more in the same way that a mother coos over the pictures her toddler draws, and sticks them to the fridge because she feels like she has a loving duty to do so. I’ve tried so many times to explain how much I love this girl, and how much she means to me, but the words simply escape me. I don’t think she understands, and it’s a bit sad that she will not allow herself to believe it. She is too many things, both materialistic and emotional. She’s my support, propping me up and making me smile. She’s a trainee doctor, a musician, and my comfort blanket. She’s a girl with an eating disorder, and other mental health issues. She’s a girl that thinks she’s fat. She’s a clean freak. She’s amazing at hockey. She gives the tightest and safest hugs. She’s organised. She’s a smiler. She can pull the best faces. She gives amazing advice and knows how to react. She knows how to speak publicly, and one on one. She’s beautiful. She’s pretty. She has an ‘interesting’ dress sense sometimes. She reads me like a book yet can’t figure me out. And I can read her like a book yet can’t figure her out. She’s very very special to me, and it’s simple. I wouldn’t cope without her.

It was a fabulous reunion, and I couldn’t have asked for anything more. She’s taught me that everything will be okay, and she makes me strong. Seeing her again was just a reminder that truly, she never left, and never will leave. Neither will I. I trust her with my life, and she trusts me with hers. We can do anything. Always and forever.

Letters In The Post

I guess a love for post goes back to being a kid. All children love post, don’t they? You’re not lucky enough to get much post when you’re little, and so that odd birthday card from a distant relative that you’ve never met is so exciting, you can barely contain yourself! Most people grow out of that love, because the older you get, the more frequent and boring your letters become, and so the novelty wears off.

Until you get to university. Being so far away from home means that post starts to get interesting again, and has an amazing ability to leave you grinning from ear to ear. I’m excited for my weekly letter from my nan, but no matter how hard I wish, I don’t usually find much else of interest in the post box. There’s often a few random forwarded pieces of junk mail from my mum, but I’ll be lucky if I find much else with my name on it. Without a doubt, the most exciting part (albeit a little annoying) part of post now I’ve moved, are parcels. I always get a strange feeling of butterflies when I get an email to tell me I’ve a parcel to collect. Whilst I know it’s probably that amazon order, or the two Freddo’s my dad promised to send (as it is, he actually sent me a whole selection box!) a little part of me hopes that it’ll be a surprise from a friend. I’m excited to find out, and the mystery and suspense is amazing.

It doesn’t matter really though if I’m walking to the parcel centre, or unlocking the flat post box in the common room, I’m always hoping to see something with my name on it, and I’m always hoping to see something that I’m not expecting. I love it when my friends write to me, because they’re the people who really know what I want or need to hear, and who make me smile most of all. It’s silly, I’ve not had any post from friends since about week two, so I don’t know why I still hope for it. But I do. Every single day, I still check the post box, hoping they’ll be something there. Hoping they’ll be a surprise, or something that makes me smile. I want to get that buzzy feeling when you sprint up the stairs back to the comfort of your room and open the envelope. It’s beautiful.

It’s sad when they don’t write, especially when I make such an effort to write to them. Of course, what’s important is that I’ve taken my time to make them happy, and that they benefit. I don’t write for a response, I write because I want them to be excited to see a letter with my handwriting on it. But it is still nice when you get something back, and it has an ability to turn your mood around that’s not quite like anything else. You know when you get a letter that someone has taken time out of their day to think about you, and that’s a very very special feeling.

My phone isn’t much different now, either. If I know that I’ve sent someone a message, and they’ve seen it, I’m eager for a reply. Being so far away and with such busy lives means that we don’t get to speak that much to those who we love. So at night, when I’m lying in bed, and my phone vibrates, I jump up to see what it is. I know that it’ll just be the flat whatsapp message, but there’s always a little hope.

Letters in the post are the best though. They take me back to my childhood, and their memory stays forever. I keep them all, and I stick up all my cards, so I can look back and remind myself that there’s people out there who love me.

Looking Back

Today, I found out some things about the start of my friendship with my best friend that I didn’t know before.

French Exchange, which was where we really got to know each other, was in October 2011. For at least a month after that, we panicked about my French Exchange partner and his secret that he didn’t want anyone to know, but everyone did know. Eventually, we resolved that issue, and it was in December of that year that I first asked for her advice with my own problems.

Back then, it appears that sometimes, she’d be the first one to say hi, and to randomly message (usually because she wanted the coursework that she’d lost, but that’s beside the point!) I’m not going to lie, I miss that. It happened today, but normally, it doesn’t happen much any more. I’m always first, and it can make me feel more like a burden than a friend at times. I think we were really close back then. We’d known each other for over a year, but most of of that time, we’d simply been partners in Science. It’s crazy to look back and realise just how much one week in France changed our lives. Looking back, it’s as though we became best friends overnight.

Of course, there’s always been ups and downs, and it’s funny how when she didn’t really know me, she struggled to work me out sometimes. She’d say the wrong thing, and now, I just can’t imagine those words coming out of her mouth! I also don’t think that I was as weak as we always make me out to be. I was a strong little nugget, and it looks like many times, I was the guiding one, with the ideas. Of course, I still had the same little quirks that I have now, like not being able to make decisions. But I did talk, and I did give my opinion.

I feel like perhaps we became so close over the French Exchange issue because we could relate so well. She was the one who said she we stressed and worried, not me (although I was, trust me)! We’ve not been in a situation like that since. There’s never been something else where we share the issue, it’s always ‘my’ problems or ‘her’ problems, and the other one is always helping. I feel like being on the same page was what brought us so close, and I’ve enjoyed learning about that journey. It has left me beaming from ear to ear, and even more excited for Christmas!

Looking back can be fun, you just have to remember the smiley bits, even if they are few and far between!