I had always planned to move away from home. In fact, for a long time I didn’t consider Winnipeg my home - rather a place where I’d grow up but would move away from the moment I got the chance.
My attitude stayed the same until I had to start saying my goodbyes as I prepared to move to another country to pursue my lifelong dream. Goodbyes seem easy when you’re leaving for a good reason…. until it’s time for them to happen.
I had no idea how sad I would be to leave my friends. The goodbyes felt like they were going to be the end of my growing up chapter. I really didn’t expect my friends to still be there once I got caught up in my new life.
Five years later, the good ones are still very much my friends.
Through all the ups and downs, we have all made the effort to stay in touch, and beyond that, support each other through our greatest accomplishments and through our challenges.
My group of best girlfriends is more like a group of sisters. We love each other like sisters - and we call each other out like sisters! We now span across three different time zones, and yet we still make it work.
One of our favorite ways of doing so is through our group text chats. These chats have seen everything.
We text each other nearly every day, sometimes just to send a silly joke or picture, sometimes for support through hardship. Everyone always answers, no matter if it’s hours later.
When Keepster was introduced to me, I immediately thought of our group chat.
These girls have shown me what friendship means. It’s all right there in our text messages: support, love, and laughter.
My experience in creating a Keepster book was amazing. I laughed over everything all over again. I was so filled with emotion over what we’ve done for each other. I revisited the hard times we’d all been through and felt the love of my ‘sisters’. And in looking back did I get perspective! (I guess you call that learning.)
I created my Keepster book and headed home for Christmas. Truthfully it was the gift I was most excited about in of all the ones packed in my suitcase full of goodies.
My friends and I had planned to do our gift exchange on the night of my return. My mom offered to host them all even though I was arriving later than the party was starting - just another indication of what a family we’ve become.
My flight ended up being delayed - not once, not twice, but five times that night. I was sure that they’d all go home and I’d have to give my gift to each of them separately at another time. But when I landed at the airport and exhaustedly dragged my luggage through the terminal, I was greeted by four of my closest friends on the “hug rug” at the airport. They’d all stayed up until my 1:30 am arrival!
We drove to my house and the rest of them were waiting for me with more hugs and smiles. I gave my Secret Santa gift to my friend Kelsie, who immediately upon seeing it started to cry.
I’d put everything about our long long-distance friendship down on paper.
In fact, the book was truly a highlight for all the girls. They laughed and they cried. They overflowed with emotions, and they demanded their own copies!
We now all have our first ‘volume’, and I’m excited to create our second this year. These are the friends with whom I will go through life, forever and always. So though they’ll remain the same, our adventures will change, and I am certain there will be many more Keepster volumes yet to come...
I can’t begin to describe how deeply this gift affected me on a personal level. Thank you Keepster for helping me put such an important friendship into such a lovely keepsake. There will be many more volumes yet to come!