This I Believe

Alicia - Birmingham, Alabama
Entered on September 5, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: death

I believe in cherishing my friendships. I learned that when one of my best friends died in tenth grade.

All of junior high I had a very tight group of friends. We were over at each other’s houses every weekend, and we always sat with each other during lunch. Every secret we could possibly come up with about ourselves would be known to everyone else in the group.

A girl named Mia was part of this group. She was an extremely petite, shy athlete. She was never one to stick up for herself too often. Even as her friends we found ourselves taking advantage of her when she let us. Quite often she would be carrying our lunch trays to the trash cans or anything else we could possibly dream up. I valued the friendship I had with her, and I did see her as extremely close to me. I just could not break away from treating her the same as everyone else did.

Tenth grade came before I knew it, and everything seem to be going great: it was my first year at the high school, and I had the best friends anyone could think of having. It all came crashing down on October 20. It started out as an ordinary day, but a couple hours in, we received the worst news of our life: Mia had died.

I cannot go back in time and change my behavior, but if I could, I would have treated her with much more respect.

Our group of friends seemed closer than ever when the incident first happened, but after awhile, we almost stopped talking completely. I guess we did not want to get hurt like that again. I finally realized how important my friendship with them was to me, so I started inviting them back over to my house and talking to them in the hallways again. Things are not the way they were before, but at least I know that I have still have their friendship.

I believe in valuing friendships because you could never predict when someone very important to you could be out of your life completely. At least if you put a great emphasis in the friendship you will know that they knew how much you actually cared about them.