Friends providedvital support

To the editor

   When I first came to America five years ago, I faced one of the most difficult times of my life. I was in a strange place where they spoke a different language, which made me feel insecure. My friends supported me and helped me through this difficult time. I would like to take this opportunity to express my thanks to them. Their loyalty, sympathy, and everlasting support have made them my best friends.
   Most of my friends still live in Taiwan, where I grew up. I met them when I was in the seventh grade. After my parents told me that I was moving to the United States, I was afraid that I would lose contact with them.
   Despite the distance between us, we were able to keep contact. Our way of communications was through e-mails and letters. I thank my friends for being loyal, had it not been for them I could not get through the hard times.
   Through the years, their sympathy has helped me to get through the problems that I first faced. Life was tough, I imagined my classmates laughing at my lack of language skills. Day and night, I was forced to taste the bitter loneliness.
   The letters I sent out to my friends in Taiwan were full of grouses and a description of the difficulties that I faced here. In return, I received letters that gave me a positive attitude, They showed me how much they cared, and how much they wanted to share my burden.
   In those letters, they showed me support with sympathy. They told me that I could get through anything I put my mind to. Their words gave me strength and helped me to become more self-confident. I used to come home, sit by the door, and wait for the postman to arrive. As soon as the mail arrived, I ran out to see if I received anything.
   When I saw the familiar handwriting of my friends on the envelope it would put a smile on my face. When I was upset, I would take out my collection of letters and read them just to remind myself that someone across the world still cares about me. They never knew how much their letters meant to me. Their letters give me something to look forward to and the strength to face the next day.
   Eventually, my English improved and life started to get better. I began to adapt to my new life, but our friendships still remained strong. We chat on line, talk on the telephone, and send letters. Although I will never be able to repay them, I would like to thank them for all that they had done for me.
   In Chinese, there is a saying: "To send charcoal in snowy weather means more than to give a big gift." That is exactly what they have done for me. They showed me the true meaning of friendship when I needed it the most. I cannot thank them enough for it.

Diana Hsu