An Open Letter to My Grad School Posse

Dear fierce woman I get to call friend,

I have to admit, I am about to gush. I know, I know, there I go catching all the feels. Please forgive me, I just have a lot I want to say to you. I have so much to thank you for.

When you land in a new place, you never really know what you’re going to get. Who you’re going to meet, what your day-to-day is going to look like, if and when you’ll make friends. In new situations, your entire life is unknown and the likelihood of severe hermit-like behavior (at least for this introvert) skyrockets.

We’re not quite six months into graduate school here in Newcastle and I could not be more grateful for the people I’ve met…for YOU. The conversations we’ve shared, the laughter we’ve had, and the adventures we’ve survived. You are one of the women I have met from around the world that is passionate, ambitious, intelligent, and unashamed. You, and this group we’ve created, is incredible. We gather around food, coffee, tea, weekend trips to new cities, markets, shopping, movies, etc. and we talk about life. More than talking about it, we live it together. We share our struggles. We laugh about our cultural mishaps or jokes lost in translation. Being with you and sharing my life with you has been an honor and a privilege.

I’ve often marveled over the years at how rich my life feels because of the people in it, and this season of life is no different. You are an amazing woman that has encouraged me, challenged me, and motivated me in ways I didn’t expect, but that I appreciate more than I can express. When I’m excited about an idea, you dive in with me. When I’m discouraged, you send me encouragement. When I’m tired, you give me room to rest. When I’m feeling insecure, you remind me of my worth. You are such a valuable friend to me.

I don’t know if these friendships are lifelong. I don’t know what happens after we get diplomas (!!!!!) and no longer call Newcastle or the UK “home”. I don’t know how long it will take before Facebook ‘likes’ become our new constant contact, but for now, I’m going to relish in the friendship we have. I’m going to gush, just this once, about your importance in my life, because I just want you to know that I see you and I appreciate you. Thank you for the playing a role in this part of my life, and I do hope it is for many years to come.

You inspire me and I am grateful for you.

All my love,



(ps – cover photo from

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