All This to Say “Happy Birthday”

We all need a best friend. Whether it is a parent, a sibling, a significant other, or someone totally unrelated to us, there is nothing like having someone we can fully rely on. A best friend is someone we can disclose our true selves to—without having to worry what they will think of us. We can share our darkest secrets, sharpest pains, and also our joys. It’s someone we can act silly with, but also share deep, serious moments. Best friends are so closely tied that a single look can convey an entire thought—usually resulting in uncontrollable laughter. Even if we haven’t talked to our best friend in ages, we can always pick up right where we left off.

This post is in honor of my best friend of 12 years. Today, she turns twenty—the big 2-0. Even though we’ve lived 5 hours apart for the past 10 years, we haven’t let that deter us. Numerous phone calls, texts, tweets, letters, Facebook posts, and Snapchats—all of which probably number in the thousands—have allowed us to remain within reach. We’ve had arguments, shared innumerable laughs, and moments of sadness. We’ve challenged, supported, and inspired each other. I’ve seen her grow up from a young girl addicted to horses and Oreos, to a beautiful young woman who moved across the country to pursue her passion of ballet—while still addicted to Oreos. Granted, we both got into our fair share of trouble along the way, but there isn’t a single moment I would ever want to replace.

Emma, I love you and miss you. Your vibrancy and attitude of living life to the fullest is rare. Hold onto it; never let it go. If you want something, go for it. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do something. Make mistakes and learn from them. You are your own person on your own path; take the detours, stop and enjoy the flowers along the way, and above all, continue being amazingly, wonderfully, and uniquely YOU. All in all, I want to wish you a very happy 20th birthday. It’s only going to happen once, so enjoy it!

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