I’ve known my best friend since 4th grade. Technically we met in kindergarten, but 4th grade marks when we decided to sit next to each other for the first time and talk. A few months ago marked the 10 year anniversary of that day—our friendiversary, if you will. I am so incredibly grateful for the fact that she’s been in my life for an entire decade, and I can’t wait for the countless friendiversaries to come (cheesy, I know, but stick with me). From becoming god-friends of each other’s dogs to rejoicing in Contemplative Moon Time, I have learned so much from this wonderful human being. Below are a few of the life lessons she’s taught me over the years:
Your family can extend past your relatives. The people who will always support and love you are not limited by blood. My best friend and I joke that we’re each other’s family’s adopted daughters, which is pretty much true. I miss her Umma like I miss my own.
Simple things can bring the most joy. Some of my favorite memories with my best friend consist of sitting on her roof and looking at the moon. Nothing fancy. There’s beauty in a lot of what we take for granted.
Persistence pays off. It took us seven years to complete a video game. SEVEN YEARS. We started it in 4th grade and didn’t finish until 11th…but hey, we did it!
Anything can be fun with some imagination. In elementary school, my best friend and I once spent an hour playing with a practice EpiPen (no needle). We made an obstacle course out of couch cushions and took turns “saving” each other by traversing the course and finally poking the other with the practice pen at the end. That was honestly one of the best games we’ve ever played.
Be loyal. Stick up for each other. Be there through thick and thin. Judge people holistically, not by case. Support each other’s success.
Stereotypes can be so wrong. There are so many things that stereotypes are founded upon: racism, prejudices, outdated notions, one-time experiences…this list goes on and on. This loose foundation makes it easy for stereotypes to be broken all the time, which they are. For example, my impression of Greek life is that it strips people of their independent thinking and encourages homogeneity. However, that is an incredibly one-sided view of the system. There are tons of people who enforce the stereotype, but also so many who break it, like my best friend who’s in a sorority. Keep an open mind.
When it comes to Monopoly, proceed with caution. This game is intense. We played the Disney version in 4th grade and took it incredibly seriously. If you don’t want to risk things getting heated, avoid Monopoly (and buying Park Place if someone else has their eye on it).
Be fearless. Have a sense of adventure! Explore and try new things. Take worthwhile risks. Have no regrets.
There is such a thing as healthy ice cream. It’s called Halo Top, and it’s amazing. Honestly still in shock that something so delicious can be 280 calories a pint.