52 Weeks of Gratitude · Mental health · Relationships · University

Week 7: A friend (part 1)

It’s easy to see that this gratitude challenge greatly values friends: there are three entire weeks dedicated to this topic!

As I’m writing this, however, I somehow feel stumped about whom to dedicate this post to. How could I possibly choose from the many beautiful people that has touched my life? 

I’m not going to choose someone that I’m very close to (goodness knows I’ve written too much about what they’ve had to deal with when I’m around…). I’m not even going to choose someone I know particularly well. This post I write to a friend I shall call Madeline. 

You know one of those people in your course that you’d know by sight, but didn’t really speak to? That’s pretty much my relationship with Madeline. We’d occasionally exchange a smile when we pass each other down the corridor. We’d “like” each other’s posts and arty pictures on social media. But that was really how I know Madeline: through social media. 

Since I’ve known her, Madeline’s got a strong online presence. One of the things she’s passionate about is speaking out online about the stigma around mental health, as well as raising awareness about other issues that affects the lives of people close to her, posting updates about a 5K or other she happens to be training for, and generally writing positive messages. 

I have to say I lost count of the times one of her posts made me smile a little whilst scrolling through the otherwise mundane contents of Facebook. Sometimes it really makes a difference to my day. Her frequent posts about stigma and mental health was doubtless a factor that emboldened me to write this blog. Whether she intended to or not, she’s made such a positive impact on me without speaking more than three sentences to each other on real life. 

I am grateful for the people who make unseen ripples on my life. Madeline is one of those angels. Perhaps she’ll never be able to fully comprehend the effect she’s had on me (and everyone else’s lives she touches), but those ripples are there. 


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