“Who are those blonde girls always in your pictures?”
As an introvert, I have this (maybe irrational) fear that I will never make new friends in adulthood because I am simply too shy to approach a stranger and ask if they want to be friends. Note: I can’t be the only one who feels this way?! So, naturally, when I moved to Ireland I expected to make a few friends, but no BEST friends or anything like that. Luckily, Maggie is slightly less of an introvert than I am and had no problem coming up to me and demanding my friendship when we met at a group job interview a couple of weeks after I had moved to Dublin. She too is an American and I’m sure she could smell the freedom, liberty, and lack of gun control laws on me from a mile away. When expats meet, it’s the unspoken rule that you become best friends. And best friends we truly became.
Through Maggie, I met Áine (Awhn-yah), an Irish girl that is easily one of the nicest people I have ever met. Together, we’ve shared some of the best times of my life. We’ve crashed mixers way too fancy for us, danced till 6 am in clubs, blared Justin Bieber like we were 13 again, and have roadtripped together to some of the most beautiful parts of Ireland. We can be weird with each other, honest, and laugh together so hard that we end up crying with sides hurting. These girls have made me so incredibly happy, and there’s not anything I wouldn’t do for either of them. I wouldn’t have survived this year without them, and I feel so so so blessed to have had such great moments this year, and to be able to make so many more memories together in the future.
Adult friendships are really fun in the sense that they’re so genuinely good. There’s no jealousy, ulterior motives, or other petty BS you have to deal with in high school. In adult friendships, you build each other up, solicit legit advice, and love the person so much you just wanna cuddle them all the time. Friends come and go, and the older I get the more I realize it’s about quality not quantity. Mags and Áine are two of the most amazing people I have ever met, and I’m thrilled I’ve got them on my team 4 lyfe now. Despite our different backgrounds (Maggie and I come from very different backgrounds despite both of us being American), we’ve managed to become incredibly close and I am so thankful for both of these beautiful little humans. Because of them, I’ve learned the correct pronunciation of Irish names like Tadhg (Tieg, like the first syllable of “tiger”), discovered that I actually do like watching soccer (accompanied with a good ole FOR FECK’S SAKE LADS), and have learned way more about Ireland than any American should comfortably know (I can’t have been the only one who didn’t know Ireland was neutral during WWII). So, to everyone who has ever asked who these girls are in my pictures: DOSE MY BEST FRIENDS, DOSE MY BEST FRIENDS. Their beaus are pretty cool too. Shout out to Ogs and Locky- I’d cuddle all four of y’all in a King sized bed any day.
So here’s to family of the heart, transatlantic friendships, and great times with great people. Distance may separate us for now, but someday we’ll reunite and it will be as if no time has passed at all. When I moved to Ireland, I cried for a solid hour on the plane. I had a moment of holy crap, what am I doing with my life!? I had a perfectly comfortable life in Texas, and I was leaving everything familiar for the 100% unknown. But the unknown brought me two best friends, a million unforgettable memories, and so much more. I can’t imagine my life without these two and I’m so happy I won’t have to because we’ve already decided our kids are getting married someday. It’s scary to try new things and take new risks, but without these leaps of faith, who knows what you’re missing out on? Take the chance, and jump into the unknown. You never know what blessing will fall into your lane next!