Defining Friendship | Teen Ink

Defining Friendship

February 6, 2010
By kread18 DIAMOND, Berkeley, California
kread18 DIAMOND, Berkeley, California
65 articles 0 photos 33 comments

Finding a best friend in life is harder than finding a pair of jeans that fit right. Lucky for me, I have five best friends. Best friends are people you can trust to be honest and share a laugh with about things you know no one else will understand. Going through life without them is like trying to navigate a sinking ship; it just doesn’t work. The people you decide to share your life with can be the polar opposite of your personality, or can be strangely parallel to you. They influence your personality and the way you relate to others. Sara Howard is a person who was recently introduced into my life, and has coincidentally taught me lessons through her quirky characteristics, carefree attitude, and humble approach to life.

Sara is someone who is uniquely creative. She is the kind of person who is seems so ordinary upon first meeting her, but demonstrates her quirky attributes the more you get to know her. You may see her walking around the school campus with no shoes, dressed in track sweats, with a constellation of freckles dotting her nose. Her hair is neither curly nor straight but just “is” as she says, and when she got her ears pierced last year the first earrings she bought were shaped like turtles. Sara gets things that most people do not understand about me and we have a mutual agreement that whenever one friend wants to just vent, the other will listen and agree with the person when you know that is what they need. Half the time we communicate with sign language because we understand each other so well. One of the more common signs is when Sara points at my tea thermos, asking for a sip in the middle of World Studies class; a taste for tea is a common characteristic we share. Sara is the one person in the world I am most comfortable around because I am not afraid of what she may think of me if I share my off-beat ideas with her.

Sara and I are so alike because we understand each other so completely, but one thing I will never understand about Sara is her attitude towards life. Sara is one of the most care-free people I know, and tends not to get caught up in bad situations. She never worries about what others think about her, showing off her belt covered in dragons she bought in the little-boy’s section at Target over the weekend. She will walk all the way across campus, wearing not shoes, but slippers or socks with polka dots on them, not bothering with the hassle of shoelaces. Sara’s ability to take every situation and turn it around makes her one of the most interesting people I know. When we get bored, she pulls out two coloring books (Candy Land and sports-themed) and a box of colored pencils. She always has a safety pin on her, and can use it for everything from fixing her flip-flop when it breaks, to pulling my dollar bill from the vending machine when it gets hopelessly stuck. Sara’s interesting take on life, and the way she turns every situation into something different, define her carefree attitude.
Another thing about Sara that most people will not understand their entire lives is her humble approach to living. Sara was named second-fastest girl in the state at last year’s Cross Country State Championship. She started running at a young age; it’s in her blood. So naturally, the unmistakable talent mixed with the training every day makes her an amazing athlete. The thing that’s hard to understand is that Sara does not act superstar-ish; most people do not even know who she is, and that’s the way she likes it. She hates medals, and always tries to give them to me when she wins a big race because I talk about my desire to win one. One would expect athletes to be extremely health conscious, but Sara’s favorite foods are potatoes, pop tarts, and kettle corn (she always has a spare bag in her backpack), and her favorite runs are the ones where we go get ice cream or Starbucks afterwards. Sara’s love for sports is not defined by her hunger to win, but rather her will to succeed in having fun.

Sara’s quirky characteristics, carefree attitude, and humble approach to life make her one of the people that has defined me most as a friend. Sara touches everyone she meets in life, even if she does not know it. Whether it is her awesome ability to do three different kinds of French braids, or her love of her hand-me-down car that looks like a movie theatre on the inside, there’s something charismatic and infectious about Sara that makes you wonder. Sara and I made a promise to each other that someday we would live in New York City together and wear three-inch heels walking down Times Square. Sara is a person that I hope to know for the rest of my life. She has defined who I am by teaching me not to be so materialistic, and letting me vent to her, because no matter how stupid my complaints may seem, she understands. Sara is the prime example of inner-beauty and confidence where it counts.

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