With the school year winding down and coming to Illinois State on the horizon, it’s normal to start thinking about this approaching transition.
I know that my biggest fear about going away to Illinois State freshman year—apart from the communal bathrooms—was losing contact with my friends back home. We had all been friends for years and they meant the world to me, but how could we survive the strain of distance?
I was determined to stay in touch and quickly discovered so many easy and creative ways to keep my long distance friends close to heart.
This might seem like an obvious and dull option, but when I got to college I absolutely LOVED getting genuine snail mail. And they’re just as fun to send as they are to receive! Postcards come with all sorts of designs and messages, both funny and sweet, so you can always find something special. Go to the bookstore, pick out an Illinois State-themed postcard, and let someone know you’re thinking of them.
Snapchat is such a quick and easy way to keep your friends up to date on all your daily activities. Meet a particularly friendly squirrel on the Quad? Send a snap. Stressed about homework and need a friendly face? Send a snap.
When you haven’t seen your best friend in a while, stories tend to pile up and phone calls just won’t do them justice. Enter the video messaging industry. With applications like FaceTime and Skype, you can chat face-to-face with your favorite long distance pals! There are even certain apps like WhatsApp designed for cross-continental video messaging so you can even have a catch-up session with a friend who’s studying abroad.
My group of friends back home is insanely close and unfortunately very spread out due to college. The best way that we all stay connected is with our group text message thread. Whenever we miss each other or something reminds us of one another, we shoot out a text and within minutes we’re all having a conversation like we’re back in the high school cafeteria.
Long distance relationships, either romantic or platonic, are hard—but they don’t have to be THAT hard. Get creative and make that tiny extra effort to actively keep the ones you love in your life. Whether it’s a voicemail, a snap story, or a perfectly selected postcard, let that person know you miss them … or that you met a friendly squirrel on Illinois State’s Quad.
#BirdofMouth student blogger Anne Olson is a senior theatre major. Read more #BirdofMouth posts.