The Ups and Downs of Long Distance Friendships

IMG_6696.jpg

Having friends all over the world is a blessing and a curse.

During my senior year of high school, two of my closest friends were foreign exchange students. They taught me so much about their cultures, values, and what they noticed about the US compared to their countries. I still talk to them both regularly and we have visited each other since their exchange year was over.  

When I taught English in Bali, I was constantly surrounded by people from all over the world. Throughout my two and a half months there, my roommates were from Holland, Germany, Spain, China, the Czech Republic, Singapore, England and Canada. I’m connected with all of them on Facebook and Instagram. I get to see what their lives are like now, what their home countries look like, and what kind of people are in their life. We’re all connected through our passion for traveling.

This was our last day with each other.

This was our last day with each other.

The lovely people in my Uncollege cohort were from all over the US, Canada, and India. I’ve never bonded with a single group of people better in my life.

We were all dressing up like our instructor for Valentines Day.

We were all dressing up like our instructor for Valentines Day.

My cohort in Brainstation’s UX/UI course in Toronto was diverse as well. My classmates were a wide range of ages and were from Canada, Brazil, Indonesia, England, and India.

Meeting all these diverse people have made some of the best experiences of my life. I have places to stay and people to see all over the world. I’ve learned so much about other cultures, and I’ve realized that no matter where we come from, we're all the same because we all want to be happy at the end of the day.

But it’s not completely ideal to have friends all over the world. I feel like there are parts of me scattered in different places. I miss them all every single day. Sometimes I feel lonely without them. If I wanted to throw a party, it would be pretty much impossible to have all my friends there.

Saying goodbye is heartbreaking, and I had to do it dozens of times during my gap year. Pretty much every person I said goodbye to, I didn’t know when I would see them again. I don’t know if I’ll ever see some of the people I stayed up with until 2 am, talking, laughing, and playing cards with, ever again.

They are so far away from me, and our lives are so different, but they have all helped shape me into who I am today.