Describe your best friend. How would your best friend describe you?
I always find this question so interesting. It always stops me in my tracks. At age 26, I feel like I have “best friends” to fill a handful, maybe even a dozen. But not because they’re all the same, or because they fill cookie cutter roles. It’s because they all bring something so different to the table. They all provide love and support and honesty and faith and hope in different ways – in ways which have been deeply rooted into my heart and my lungs and my sprit.
So, when asked to describe my best friend, I’m torn. How to pick just one? I don’t think I can. There’s D, someone I’ve known since I was just 16, someone who I’ve broken up with and gotten back together again with more times than I can count, but this year, in this season of darkness, she’s held my hand, booked flights back to Chicago at a moment’s notice, and made me feel damn sure that I’m not alone. There’s S, who I’ve known since I was five, but since high school I’ve been able to count on him for nearly anything. Especially not in thinking that the suburbs are a million miles away from the city. There’s L, someone I met my second year of college. L has taught me everything there is to learn about love and trust, about faith in friendships and about what it really means to tell all. L knows how to hold my secrets, how to never forget anything I’ve said, and how to love me, trust me and respect me without anything changing that.
Then there’s R. We’ve only known each other a few months, but everything has changed in that span of time. With a strong voice and a gentle, open heart, R has shown me what its like to truly trust another, even in the black of night. When I know nothing else, I know that I can reach out my hand and touch his, over the Internet or over the phone, and that I am not alone. He’s changing my world. There’s A, someone who I’ve gotten closer to in our four years apart than our four years together. There’s nothing we can’t share, and I know in my worst moments she’s scared with me, sitting alongside of me, loving me no matter what. There’s J, someone who has always felt like family; someone who has taught me to trust and open up, to be realistic and hopeful all in the same moments.
Finally, there’s the most important one. The one who doesn’t get to walk away, even if she wants to. The one that has loved me and trusted me and worried about me every day of my life. My biggest advocate, my biggest rock, the person who will truly build me back up again every single time. My mother.
Each of these people have brought things that are beautiful and heartwarming into my life. And if asked to describe me, I think they would all reply similarly:
Amanda is kind, passionate, compassionate; Amanda puts others before herself way more often than she should; Amanda has a way with words; I can always trust my heart with her.
And to them, and those sentiments, I would say that’s all I’ve ever asked for in life. To touch others, to make a difference, to be the best version of me possible.
Amanda Kasper is a writer, reader, quote lover, CASA advocate, and non-profit believer, seeking space as a lifelong learner, passionate lover, and irreplaceable friend. Amanda tweets at @AKasper513 and blogs over at “& this I believe”