We’re Not Really Strangers


Credit: Instagram @werenotreallystrangers

An example of a normal, emotional post by “We’re Not Really Strangers” displays a quote, “I’m So Happy You Walked into My Life.”

Hayden MacDonald, Photojournalist

Recently on TikTok, a motivational account named “We’re Not Really Strangers” has been appearing more frequently on user’s profiles providing inspirational and emotional quotes for their followers. I myself have become obsessed with this page and its overarching message. We’re Not Really Strangers


This is fascinating to proclaim as it seems that most people lately have felt that they are strangers with themselves, yet this motivational user proclaims that no two people are truly strangers. I couldn’t believe this. At least I couldn’t believe it before walking into my Dentist’s office.


Last Wednesday, I had a routine cleaning scheduled at my dentist’s office. This was pretty usual and I didn’t expect much to come of it. When walking into the office, I was checked in and greeted by the kind woman at the front desk and waited to be taken back by one of the hygienists. After only a few minutes, I heard my name called and followed the cheerful hygienist back to her little corner of the office.


Immediately, she asked if I attended Yorba Linda High School. When answering “yes,” she asked a follow-up question “Do you know Mr. Cadra (a well-renowned teacher of YLHS)?” I responded with another “yes” as she revealed that she was Mrs. Cadra, his wife. Although I had never had Mr. Cadra as a teacher, this connection instantly catalyzed our discussion throughout the entire cleaning.


We talked the entire time as she inquired about my thoughts regarding school, college, the pandemic, and my future. We discussed these topics thoroughly as she recounted anecdotes of her own life. The topics changed from casual chit chat to those of deep, meaningful conversation: relationships, marriage, dreams, and happiness. 


Finally, my cleaning was complete, and I thanked her for the lovely conversation and went on my way.


Driving home, I couldn’t believe what had just occurred. I had only met this woman an hour prior yet had told her more about myself than I have to people I had known for years. She provided incredible advice and meant every word she said. It was even more appalling that I may never even see her again. This experience changed my outlook on other people completely and brought an astonishing revelation.


She and I weren’t really strangers.


Shayda Roshdieh (12) can also recount a similar scenario from her trip to India with the Girl Scouts. On this trip, she was immersed in a new culture full of beauty and life surrounded by people who truly cared for one another. She was able to experience this kindness firsthand when she and three friends were trudging up the side of a steep hill.


All three could be seen struggling as they attempted to scale this large hill that housed a beautiful temple at its peak. Seeing their struggles, a nearby gentleman advised them to “zig-zag, zig-zag.” As their current efforts seemed futile, they took the stranger’s advice and began hiking up the hill “zig-zag.” This method proved helpful as they quickly scaled the remaining terrain and reached the top.


They thanked the stranger immensely for his kindness. The man, Vijay, appreciated their kind words and asked if they would like a ‘tour guide’ to read the words covering the temple’s walls. They accepted his kind offer and were amazed at all the information he knew regarding its history and little secrets that they would have never been able to uncover themselves.


After finishing their “tour”, they asked Vijay if he knew of any good tea and cheap food places around. He exclaimed that his favorites were actually quite close and he would love to treat them in order to continue their lively conversation. 


While grabbing the tea and food, Vijay and the girls discussed their lives, their hopes, and their dreams for well over an hour. Shayda remembers the tea and food locations Vijay recommended as being “incredible”, but she remembers Vijay’s kindness and honesty as being the most impactful. She had not known Vijay for longer than a few hours, but she had felt that she had known him for years. 


They weren’t really strangers.


Although it may seem unbelievable to think that the woman standing in front of you at Starbucks or the guy walking opposite of you in the hall could be anything but strangers; in reality, they already share so much in common with you. They too struggle with their own personal flaws, fear the unknown, cherish those they love, laugh, cry, scream, and shout. 


This is because we all share one crucial characteristic. We’re all human.


This humanity is what drives us to open the door for someone nearby, allow someone into their lane while driving, help an elderly person carry their groceries, volunteer at a local homeless shelter, bleed school spirit, check in on friends, and hug our loved ones. Our humanity is what unites us all despite our differences.


It’s why we are able to overshare with our dental hygienist and become good friends with the man who helped us up a hill. 


Deep down we know that we are all the same and understand that we’re just trying to make the most of the life we have. 


In Conclusion, 

We’re Not Really Strangers at all.