“True friendship is sitting together in silence and feeling like it was the best conversation you’ve ever had.” -Unknown
As many of you know, the art for every article is posted by Daily Cup of Joe’s Graphic designer, Izzy Reyes. It’s not often one gets the pleasure of working with someone so talented or easily inspired: oftentimes, she can turn out an image that perfectly encaptures the feeling of an article before I have even had a chance to write it. Of course, over a decade of friendship contributes to her ability to read my mood before I have a chance to vocalize it. So our partnership, which is already wonderful, becomes infinitely better when I remember I get to work on something I care about with one of my best friends.
Since high school, the both of us have been relatively on the same wavelength. With similar values, loving families, and a desire to exceed others expectations, the two of us have never had trouble seeing eye to eye. Even while entertaining a larger friend group, a small look or nod was enough to convey even the most complex of messages. We had the immense privilege of watching each other grow while also growing along with them. At nearly every major life event so far, it’s been Izzy who was the first to congratulate me. Or offer herself as a shoulder to cry on. Either way, a friendship like that is one in a million.
In college, I was presented with the opportunity to continue fostering our relationship while pursuing my degree. So the two of us took on Carroll University like we had done with everything else: together, getting lunch or watching scary movies until the late hours of early morning. But as the monotony of school, with my research papers and her clinical rotations, began to take hold, we never stopped trying to make the effort to show one another we cared. So when we would meet on that odd Tuesday, both tired and with not much to say, the silences we held were safe and comfortable. We would eat or go to the ceramics studio or walk around the neighborhoods of Waukesha, imaging how we would change a house’s exterior to add value for resale.
One night in particular comes to mind when I’d realized just how much my friend meant to me. It had been a long week for the both of us: the pressures of school and work had been mounting, so much so that we had not seen each other for nearly a week. But along with her roommate Yadira (another close friend), the three of us decided it was high time to give ourselves a break. Together, we talked all the way to El Palmar, the only Mexican restaurant open past 12 a.m. We enjoyed a big meal, laughing and joking about friends and dating and drama. By 1:30, Yadira decided she was going to get a start on her homework early tomorrow and bid us goodnight. We waved her off and began our way back toward campus.
We didn’t go home though. By chance or fate or our mutual connection, the two of us walked right past our building without saying a word. The campus was silent, softly lit in an incandescent glow that seemed just as warm as the night air. When our feet finally stopped, we found ourselves on the top of the hill which overlooked the football field and high end apartments. We laid there for a while, staring up at the stars while Ella Vos’ “Down in Flames” played on repeat, just as it had for the last several days. I don’t remember if we talked much then, or what we might have talked about if we had. What I do remember is the silence when I realized how much the amount of love I had for Izzy couldn’t be expressed in words. But, like always, I didn’t need to tell her in order for her to understand. It sat there between us, in an open sort of silence, like a friend who’d been with us for a very long time. And its still there, even as adult life and careers pull us in different directions. So today, I’m thankful for silence. And I’m thankful for its ability to express the things even I can’t put into words.
Do you have a friend or relative who understands what your thinking before you say it? Or maybe you’ve experienced a moment where silence communicated a message more thoroughly than words ever could? If so, please share it with us! Send your story to our email firstname.lastname@example.org or comment on our post to share your story with others! As always, stay safe and hopeful.