Transitioning from high school to college and choosing a college 1,700 miles from home had its rough patches. My world before that was very small, so realizing that people might come and go in your life, and might not stay as long as you thought they would, was a lesson that took me a while to both understand and accept. Now as I take those same steps toward transitioning from college to career, I start to wonder how the people around me might come and go again. It makes me stop and think about how thankful I am for those that are here to stay. The ones I couldn’t get rid off even if I wanted to.
This is Kayla and Richole. And they are my childhood best friends.
I still remember the exact day I met Kay in kindergarten. She was standing on a chair playing ‘Mom’ in a very serious game of house and asked if I wanted to be one of the kids. And Chole I met on the playground in first grade and bonded with over our love for tether ball. In the fourth grade we became the “KAR Speed Readers,” took home first place in the coveted “Battle of the Books” competition and became best friends along the way. The three of us have been inseparable ever since.
Growing up we all played basketball together, ran cross-country and Kay and I were both dancers, but it would probably surprise people to know just how very different the three of us are from one another. Our personalities, personal styles, hobbies and interests, and even our choice in music is often very different. In high school, when it came to our passions, Chole had tennis, I was the ag kid and Kay had music and track. But the strength of our friendship came from our love and respect for each other, and for life, allowing us to find the perfect balance. And we always supported each other, no matter what, even if we didn’t understand it.
When it came time to go to college, we again, couldn’t have been more different. Kay went to Gonzaga in Spokane, Wash., Chole accepted a full-ride tennis scholarship to the University of Alabama-Birmingham and I chose Kansas State University.
Moving away from them and knowing that our friendship was inevitably going to change has been, by far, one of my biggest challenges. I know that I am lucky, that the depth of our friendship and bond is unique. These two girls know me better than I know myself, sit front seat in so many of my favorite memories and never have we had to go through a trial without the other two standing on either side. Not everyone can say they have a best friend like that, and God gave me two.
It hasn’t been easy. Becoming adults and building separate lives means we have each changed and have grown into different people. Skype dates and catching up can be few and far between, and trying to be there for someone just isn’t quite the same when you can’t be sitting next to them. But at the end of the day, their friendship gives me a silent confidence that I have come to depend on and no part of me can imagine not having them in my life.
This week is both of their birthdays, Chole on the 12th and Kay on the 15th. I want them to know just how important they are to me and just how much I miss them everyday.
KAR = Love
Love your sisters, love yourself.
Happy Birthday Kayla and Richole!