Brooke Davis and Payton Sawyer, Batman and Robin, Peter Pan and Tinkerbelle, Michael Scott and Dwight Schrute, Spongebob and Patrick, Chandler and Joey, and Lilo and Stitch—just some of the iconic duos that instantly come to mind when thinking about friendship. At this time of year in particular, we typically take the time to reflect on our own friendships and the people that make those friendships oh-so-special. These friends are the people that we can call at any hour of the day, that we can send the most horrendous selfies to, that we can eat an entire pizza with and not feel judged, and that most importantly, are there for us no matter what.
I am sure that many of my fellow Blue Hens shared at least some of these sentiments before coming to college. How will I find a roommate that I can actually stand living with? What are the people on my floor going to be like? Will I have the guts to actually strike up a conversation with someone in my class? What will the people in my major be like? Will I even make friends? Admittedly, it can sometimes be a hard transition going from friends that you have known since kindergarten—when a girl randomly decided to ask you who you liked on the first day—to friends that you have known for barely a month or two. As a sophomore, with almost three semesters under my belt, however, I have come to learn that while I have only known some of my friends here for a little over a year, they are the friends that I could see being in my wedding party, the friends that my future children will call “aunt” and “uncle,” the friends that no matter the distance—from Pennsylvania to Connecticut to New York—will be my friends for life.
My parents always tell me that I am so lucky to have the friends that I do, and I’ve come to realize that they are actually right—I’ll let them have it just this once! In college specifically, friendships develop so much faster than they do in say middle or high school. Knowing someone for two months can feel like two years due to the amount of time that you spend together—going to class, walking around campus, hanging out, eating, sleeping, and everything in between. I personally can attest to this phenomenon; in just a semester, I not only learned the names of my friend’s immediate family but the names of his nieces and nephews, where he went to high school, who his favorite football player is, what his favorite restaurant is, and how he likes his coffee. Impressive, I know! I’ve come to find that it is not the length of time that you’ve been friends but the quality of the friendship that really makes it worthwhile.
Reflecting on how far I’ve come in the past year, the friendships that I’ve maintained from high school, and the ones that I have made during my time here at the University of Delaware, I now understand the zenith of friendship. My true friends have been the ones that let me come into their room every day to steal a piece of their candy before I go to bed. They are the friends that push me to do new things—such as learning how to skateboard so that they could tell everyone that their friend actually knows how to skateboard. My friends are the ones that threaten to come to my tennis matches with obnoxious posters to cheer me on against my will. They are the ones that have conversations with me from outside the shower. My friends are the ones that share in my oddly relaxing passion for organizing and are willing to spend an entire night folding and hanging clothes and rearranging drawers. They are the people that make me fall to the ground laughing over some of the most random, childish conversations—conversations that normal human beings would likely never have. They are the friends that I can text or call once a month, and upon seeing them in person, feel like I never even left. They are the friends that no matter what, will drop everything to be there for you, to listen to you rant for an hour, to talk to you on the walk back from class, and to always guarantee that at least one of your embarrassing stories be brought up in conversation.
What makes these friends valuable parts of our lives is that we cannot remember not having them in our lives, and we have no clue how we even survived without them. I have met some of my very best friends in some of the most random ways—whether it was through a Facebook message before coming to college, a conversation struck up while waiting in line, or the random selection of a specific dorm room number—and I am so thankful that our paths crossed. I sometimes wonder what would have happened if I decided not to send that message, if I got in line a minute later, or if I chose to live on a different floor or in a different room number. The moral of the story is that you never know when you’re going to meet your next best friend. One Tree Hill, also known as the best show to exist on the planet (even though Netflix may disagree) presents us with this quote, “If you had a friend you knew you’d never see again, what would you say? If you could do one last thing for someone you love, what would it be? Say it, do it, don’t wait. Nothing lasts forever.” As we close off the semester and close off another year, take a second to talk to someone new, to tell your friends how much they mean to you, to be the best friend that you can be, and to take a page from the books of Mike and Sully, Nathan and Lucas, Scooby and Shaggy, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, Eric Forman and Steven Hyde, and Buzz and Woody.