Dear Lauren,

I can't believe we've known one another for 8 years now! We still both laugh when we think of the first things we heard about one another. You were told I was weird. And I was told you were rich and popular! So glad neither of us were put off by each other's labels! 

Going from the place my trauma occurred to a new, similar environment was a massive deal, and so making a friend like you in that kind of situation means more to me then meeting any other friend. You were there when I was at my most vulnerable, scared and hurt. And if I'm honest, you were the person to restore my faith in friends. I was in such a confusing place with anger towards those friends who hadn't noticed what I was going through (that's gone now after therapy) and so having the fun and normal friendship with you was refreshing. Feeling that I wasn't silently screaming for your help was refreshing. And your fun-loving, positive attitude to life was refreshing. 
When we became even closer after Sixth Form, I was so happy to have someone I could spend so much time with and enjoy every second of it! My thoughts on our friendship were a little bit confused though because when I began hallucinating and self-harming I didn't feel that our relationship was the kind that meant we could talk about stuff like that. And that's nothing on you! I loved going shopping and our walks to the woods, our craaaazy nights out and dancing in your car singing Nicki Minaj while trying to see the Northern Lights! I loved that your home became my second home as I began letting myself in and helping myself to cups and cutlery and meeting all of your family. Our nights out gave me the opportunity to finally have some freedom from all of the horrible things going through my head and that I was doing to myself. I needed that freedom. I also felt like I needed a best-friend where the relationship wasn't all deep and negative. I liked our care-free, fun-loving way of things! 

And when my hospitalisations became more frequent and you visited me on the ward, it was... Different. And I know you explained your feelings afterwards and I completely understood. I think with others, it might've ruined the friendship; but not with you. You broke the rules. And when I was told I was going to the hospital in Bradford for a long time, I remember promising you I wouldn't find a new best-friend. I felt so guilty when I met Chelsea and became so close to her but you were hanging out with new friends too. 
And here's the thing... When I moved back up and we met up; it was the same. It was the same as it's always been, if not, better. Because I was better and felt that I didn't have so many secrets and you knew the basics so if I cancelled something you understood. And you're genuinely one of those friends where I don't need to speak to you or see you every day or even every week; it'll always be the same when we do speak or get together. 
Right now, I'm enjoying becoming involved in the new life you've built yourself while I was away, spending time with your family again, having our usual giggles and adventures and making plans for the future. Plans of things we can do together. 
We've never been those friends who sit down and talk like this so I thought I'd write this post so that you know. And so everyone else knows how important you are when I mention you in posts or vlogs.
I love you!

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