Thank You, Emmaline


Vanessa Valentino, Staff Writer

With autumn comes a season of gratitude, and with Arcadia Quill comes an opportunity to properly reflect on what I’m thankful for. For me, it’s easy to forget all the blessings in my life. It’s only in contentment that I realize the extent of my appreciation, and it’s even rarer for me to put it in words. This year, one person I’m especially thankful for is Emmaline: my best friend, my Cognate, and the Romeo to my Juliet (not literally, I’d hope). She’d also be pleased to know that she’s the person I most associate with Taylor Swift.

When it comes to the longevity of friendship, the two of us are unreasonably pessimistic—and yet, still optimistic for the longevity of ours. But even if we’re not the future godmothers of each other’s children (assuming we can pull), I’ll always be grateful for her. Whether it be sitting on the floor of a dark bathroom stall, filming reflection videos over strawberry shortcake, or inventing scenarios that progressively get absurd, I’ve appreciated every moment with her, and I’m always looking forward to our future adventures, even if they’re only every Aug. 11. (We’ll complete our bucket list one day, parent approval or not!) 

I’m grateful to experience such a seamless connection through our conversations. We talk so openly and honestly about each other (and about others: we have a few recurring subjects of psychoanalysis). And we can talk for hours, an impressive feat for our social batteries. If you look through my FaceTime history, it’s “fav bbg!” over and over in a record of some of my favorite moments. When Emmaline and I talk, we broach ruminative topics quite often, and I enjoy these conversations as much as I enjoy the conversations that dissolve irrationally into laughter. Get yourself a girl who can make you think and laugh, for real! 

Speaking of laughter, I am so grateful for all of it that we’ve shared. I’m honored that her polite laugh is, to me, foreign and jarring. We talked about this in H-Mart, where she tried to laugh politely as a demonstration, only for us to burst into real laughter. Sometimes I don’t know how we make each other laugh so easily; it’s definitely not through good humor. I’m amazed at how—through text!—we laughed hysterically at Bejeweled. Really, Taylor Swift exclaiming “Nice!” isn’t that funny. Neither is Ryan and me starting a beanbag-tossing club. Or my “ex-boyfriend” Carson. Or the hypothetical four-square mission at her church. Or our extensive (albeit innocent) joke built off a misfortune peer; I’m sure he never imagined he’d be idolized in our humor. 

On a softer note, I’m also grateful to receive her abundance of love, and for the safe spot where I’m kindly and patiently listened to. Genuinely, she makes me happy, and I think that’s all a good friendship really needs. Talking to her is familiar to me, and it brings a sense of belonging and comfort. We are, as Emmaline had once phrased, a constant. Between us, the term friendship is stripped down to its bare truth: that we make each other happy, that we’re there for each other. I’m grateful for this.

Thank you, Emmaline, for your sole presence in my life; I’m grateful that I’ve come to know you so well. Who knew the girl who spit on me and dissed my clothes would become my best friend? Enemies to lovers, I guess! But, in all seriousness, I genuinely couldn’t have asked for an easier friend to love. I appreciate you so much!