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This Sunday is National Friendship Day. It began as a Hallmark Holiday, but we rarely give or receive appreciation cards from friends. Nowadays we post a picture with our best friends on Instagram, with the hash tag #NationalFriendshipDay. Either way, today we should think, “What does friendship mean to me, and where would I be without my friends?”

One of my best friends is my older sister, Rachel. She is one of the funniest people I know, and she knows me better than I know myself. We don’t spend as much time together as we would like, but at the end of the night, I know I can go into her room and sit and talk to her.

We had the pleasure of volunteering together at A Woman’s Place on the Young Adult Advisory Board. It was great having my sister with me because it allowed me to find comfort when talking about such a serious topic. She is heading off to college this month. I am going to miss her – along with our late night conversations and our morning arguments before school about me stealing her clothes – but I know she is only one phone call away.

Friendship is one of the most inspiring things. We have the ability to connect with other people and share experiences, thoughts, and feelings with someone that we trust, love, and respect.  There is nothing more gratifying than doing something for somebody else, and having friends who return the favor shed lots of light on our lives.

The friendships I have built over the past three years are something I am proud of. I have learned how to treat myself, treat others, and how I like to be treated. It takes a good friend to have good friends, and if you allow yourself to be friendly and caring, someone will do the same for you.

Personally, I pick cautiously whom I call my friends. Friends should be people I can rely on, people who I can open up and talk to without feeling judged. They critique me to change for the better, help me set personal goals, and support me along the way.

So, how do you attract true friends? It can be this simple. Be a true friend to yourself. You know what you deserve and you should never settle for anything less than that. Common interests may keep a friendship alive but having people who respect, support, and encourage you are what keeps our lives whole.

Sarah Pubins
Young Adult Advisory Board Member

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