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An Open Letter To My Best Friend Who Transferred Universities

Let me tell you a little about my best friend

I met my best friend last year completely by chance. To those who know me, or inferred from this article, my first year was ROUGH rough, by which I mean I would break down crying in a few of my classes after being thrust into the chaotic world of college and the varying identities I had to face head-on, whether I was emotionally ready to or not. I had quite a bit of imposter syndrome and did not feel like myself. This experience, associated directly with my classes and college in general, left a bad taste in my mouth which lasted me until the end of my first year, despite the new life that Spring semester tried to bring me. 

While I prided myself in making a few friendly faces and acquaintances in each of my classes, even befriending several professors, they were just that. There was no one who I identified as my best, closest friend for many reasons. It might have been because we were just looking for different things in a friend. Me, someone to confide in and be comforted by, and them, someone as free spirited and outgoing as them, or just that we did not see each other enough to really cement that closeness. Regardless, I was pretty lonely compared to where I was in high school, where I had several very close friends. This state of being can have a huge impact on anyone, whether you go from many best friends to a few, or you happen to be maintaining that status through many years. 

Cue my first law class I took in college, which was in my Spring semester. I was super proud and excited for; after all, I was finally getting out of required, high school like classes and into my passion and major. It was also the first class I took at Mason which was in a lecture hall, so I was super excited to be getting that doubled up college experience. I was timid and knew that because it was a 300 level class, there would not be many freshmen like me, and the dreaded feeling of loneliness that had affected my mental health the previous semester spread over me as I entered the glorified lecture hall. I was fine at making friends, like I said before, but the sense of “othering,” I got from being the only freshman in this already intimidating room full of prospective lawyers made me very nervous. 

But, in the front row was a girl I saw, sitting rather separated from everyone else. She looked nice and approachable, and her minimalistic fashion sense told me that she meant business and probably was not the type to look down at me or not want to associate with me because I was a freshman. I was not expecting a friend, just someone whose number I could have in case I needed help on an assignment. To my surprise, my nervous legs plopped themselves down right next to her, despite the whole row being empty. Her aura beckoned me to her to seek the comfort and healing my mind and soul needed from being berated the previous semester. 

Over time, I learned that she was in fact not an upperclassman, which she looked like because of her calm and confident manner, and was a freshman too. To my surprise, we were so, so similar, on so many different aspects. From our personal aesthetics of our carefully cultivated Pinterest boards, to our fashion sense, to our eyes for aesthetics when we critiqued several college campuses for being too urban to choose to attend when deciding where to attend college (when answering the classic, why Mason, question). But the similarities did not stop there. Our home lives, upbringings, the different things we were both struggling with during the tumultuous time as a freshman college student were so strikingly similar. I could confide in her the problems that were eating me up inside that I could not expect anyone else to be able to understand. We would talk and she would listen so intently. She seemed so at peace with her inner knowledge and advice. I would vent to her over text whenever one of my problems intensified and she would calm my soul with Rupi Kaur style texts. Even if they were cliches, the way she worded and presented them truly made my problems disappear. She knew exactly what I needed. She would spam me with love while I would read them and somehow knew I was responding in my head and kept the love coming. She knew me. I knew I was not alone in my problems anymore, that she would be beside me. And the feelings of general loneliness would disappear when I saw her. (Quick disclaimer, while she was always there for me, the relationship and support was mutual, I would definitely return the favor and was available when she needed me.)

Spring semester was short-lived, though, but I really was not worried because I knew that she would stick by me throughout the rest of our time at Mason. Shortly before the school year ended, she mentioned that she might be transferring schools to follow her dreams and I genuinely wished for her to be successful in whatever she wanted. Of course, when she told me that she was leaving for sure, my heart broke. We were not the type of friends that would hang out outside of school, which was another reason that we got along so well (we were both homebodies). Our friendship was as tight through text and twice-a-week between class meet-ups as it could have been as going out on weekends. That’s just how both of us were, and our friendship worked. So I knew we would probably not be in touch once she left, and there were no hard feelings there. The only frustration I had was that I would wish things could have been different, that the universe could have dealt our cards differently. 

I miss her a lot and hope she knows that with her help I got over that boy… just to end up crushing and not being able to get over another. I miss her a lot and want her to know that the many problems I told her about straightened themselves out as she promised me they would. I miss her a lot and I hope she found a squad that she had vocalized it was hard to find her first year at Mason. I miss her a lot and hope she loves the traditional, gorgeous campus she could not find here. I miss her a lot and hope her new school is as good enough for her as she is for them and can train her to be the best person she wants to be. I miss her a lot and hope she knows she was literally Fall semester me’s prayers’ answer. I miss her a lot and will never forget how much her simple presence and patience helped me. I miss her a lot and hope she found another best friend, a person worthy of her as she is worthy. I miss her a lot and don’t want her to know how much I miss her. I miss her a lot and hope she’s extremely happy. I miss her a lot but that’s just how our cards were dealt and I am okay with that. I miss her a lot but that is life.

I miss her a lot.

Annie Oaks

George Mason University '22

A legal studies major with a knack for writing and fashion.
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