• Itto Outini

Success can be found through Friendship

Updated: May 31, 2020

Friends are the shelter in the storm.

Friends are light in the darkness.

Friends are a mirror to see our own reflections.

Friends are the water that quenches our thirst.

The secret to be a successful person can require many things. As for me, I would not be a successful person without the strong support that I receive from my friends. The gift of friendship is wonderful and is the key to succeed. When I lost my sight, I was scared that I would not be able to go forward. However, when I made friends, I started to understand the importance of having supportive people in my life. They have helped me see the world far beyond the blackness of no sight. My friends have gone beyond what my eyes could provide me with.

We all have limits, whether through disability, experience, culture or knowledge. Yet in my case, my friends have helped me overcome all the limits that I have been facing. For example, I enjoy having books read to me, nature, and beautiful art. All of these things, I can’t see with my own eyes, but I can still appreciate them through the eyes of my friends. Some of the hardest trials that I have faced. I have overcome it with the help of my friends. At first, I struggled with college, but I never felt completely alone or lost because my friends were there to both enjoy and struggle through the process with me.

As the Corona Virus outbreak affects the world, I still feel hopeful, positive and optimistic. Some people have been surprised by this, since I am what could be considered at-risk due to my physical health issues. Those same people who contacted me, were surprised that I do not even feel lonely during the lock down. The reason is because I have never felt excluded, alone or isolated. My friends have always been by my side even if just digitally. For example, one of my friends walked me through a workout using a video call on WhatsApp. Unfortunately, not everyone has been able to make friends, the way I have.

An acquaintance of mine was honest with me about their feelings during the lock down. They said that they felt alone, depressed and isolated during the pandemic that they didn’t have anyone to talk to or to even share their concerns.

The real question is why do I have a very supportive community of friends when some people do not? The truth is that friendship is an exchange. You can't just have friends only to talk to during a pandemic. To have a supportive friend, you must be a supportive friend. Friends are not only for our needs but those who are always by our side through the good and the bad. We must also try to be supportive of our friends through their rough patches. I am thankful to have that kind of community in my life. We support each other by believing, encouraging and helping each other when we can. We value our friendship by accepting our differences and working through any problems. We are stronger together than apart.

I hope that my experience of being a successful disabled person through the support and love of my friends will help you as a reader to reflect on the meaning of friendship.

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