The Communicator

The Communicator

The Communicator

Tiny Love Stories

Mini explorations into the relationships of Ellie Fox, Eloise MacDougald and Ryan Silvester.
Bee Whalen
Art by Bee Whalen.

Ellie Fox 

Ellie Fox may have figured out the perfect friendship formula. Of course, there’s the given: fun things like concerts and baking. But there’s another reactant in Fox’s equation, one she sees as more controversial: conflict. Fox has figured this out from years of silly arguments and genuine resolution with her best friend, Maxine Rosaen. 

Although they had been riding the bus together for a year beforehand, Fox and Rosaen officially met in their fifth-grade class, where they spent most of their interactions arguing. 

“In fifth grade, we always argued,” Fox said. The disputes, in hindsight, were trivial. “We have differences that divided us, but we just laugh at those differences now.” 

But during the tail end of middle school, something changed, and the stars fell into place. “We started talking one-on-one at the end of eighth grade,” Fox said. The summer months brought plenty of adventures for the pair, perhaps the most treasured being their session at Camp Al-Gon-Quian. Fox had gone for years and was excited to share the experience with her friend. The forced proximity and lack of connection to the outside world made the girls truly realize how important their friendship was. 

Then came freshman year. With Fox attending CHS and Rosaen over at Skyline, they faced the inherent challenge of not frequently seeing each other. Without being at the same school, more communication was required to maintain a close friendship. But, they succeeded. 

“I think our relationship also proves even if you go to different schools you can still be really close,” Fox said. 

Although they couldn’t share classes and lunch tables, the duo got creative. Their days were filled with walks, baking dates, tri-weekly gym visits, and perhaps the most creative: their morning chats. 

“We live really, really close. So she takes a bus towards Alan Miller, and I take the bus towards downtown. Every day we stand across from each other, and we call on the phone for like five minutes and have a little morning chat,” Fox said. This year, she is split enrolling at Skyline. While balancing the two schools is difficult, she is always delighted to see her best friend. “Since I split at Skyline now, I do see Maxine every day for a little bit, at least. But it’s still really nice because last year I just didn’t.” Fox said. 

Although the girls have grown and matured, there are still occasional disputes. But, in Fox’s opinion, it’d be worse off if there weren’t. As Fox describes it, the two are honest about their feelings, listen to each other, and then resolve the issue with no lingering resentment. 

“I think if you just agree with someone you either don’t actually don’t have a real friendship, or one of you is lying to yourself,” Fox said.


Eloise MacDougald

Eloise MacDougald spent 365 days 3,541 miles from home. Filled with explorations and new beginnings, these days mean more to MacDougald than anything.

MacDougald and her family moved to Edinburgh, Scotland, for a year during her dad’s work sabbatical. MacDougald had always been prepared for the move as it was a decision that her family had made years prior. With any big change in one’s environment, it can bring many different emotions, ranging from joy and excitement to anxiety and fear. 

“It’s always been something I was looking forward to,” MacDougald said. “I don’t really get nervous about things. I like to just kind of have them come and deal with it then. So I was just happy to go. I was excited.”

After arriving in Scotland, MacDougald quickly realized that Edinburgh was very different from Ann Arbor. Coming from a very rigorous and busy life in Michigan, she completely flipped the switch and had to adjust to the more relaxed and flexible atmosphere that Edinburgh fosters. In hindsight, this switch was exactly what she needed, and was the perfect next step for developing into an adult.

“It kind of allowed me and my brother the room to kind of just be, and have fun, which is different,” MacDougald said. 

Landing in a new place, knowing nobody else, and having to navigate the cultural and societal differences that Edinburgh brings was a big change, but luckily she didn’t have to do it alone. MacDougald found herself leaning on, as well as supporting her siblings more than usual. 

“You arrive in this new country, and you look around and you realize, I don’t know anyone here, like I knew four people,” MacDougald said. “So your siblings kind of fill the roles of your best friends for a little while until you kind of get your feet under you. And in my case, I mean, my brother kind of continued to fill that role. Like we’re still really tight. I mean, I would do anything for him.”

Let’s go back to those 365 days. When she first arrived, those days were her best-kept secret. Macdougald knew that she would eventually return to the United States, so she needed an approach regarding friend-making. So, she leaned into her instincts, which was to connect with her peers regardless. It took MacDougald a long time to address her departure with her friends because she didn’t want it to taint their relationships.

“They were just under the impression that I was staying forever,” MacDougald said, “So telling them that I was leaving was really hard.” But even after she did tell them, her friends across the ocean continued to support her and be her rock. Now, with both her CHS friends and her Scotland friends, MacDougald has a solid circle of people. 

“My philosophy around friends is just to collect them,” MacDougald said.

One of the hardest things for MacDougald was being able to move out of her comfort 

zone and make new friends. MacDougald developed many lifelong friendships that she’ll always take with her. 

“Some of the people that I love the most and trust, and would safeguard my life with are five hours ahead across an ocean,” MacDougald said. “But I wouldn’t trade that for the world.”

Despite her reservations about the move, MacDougald will forever treasure the joys the year brought. Moving was hard. Leaving was hard. But above all hardships, it was an adventure filled with new relationships and lessons she wouldn’t have learned otherwise.

In the end, it’s the experiences that she remembers and cherishes, and MacDougald will forever be grateful for her time in Scotland.


Ryan Silvester 

The Office, sunshine and ice cream. These three simple things take Ryan Silvester right back to the very beginning of his relationship with his fiance Julianne Fava. 

Silvester didn’t have much hope in the dating app. It was 2017, and these apps weren’t certified with success stories. He certainly wasn’t expecting it to bring Fava into his life. 

It was Dec. 9, 2017, and a new profile had matched with his, Julianne Fava.  From their very first conversation, Silvester knew she was special. 

“What is your favorite thing in the world?”

This was one of the first conversations they had. Silvester asked and Fava answered. From there, he learned that they shared a favorite show: The Office. 

The more they talked the more they realized their similarities. When they matched, Fava was finishing her semester at Michigan and Silvester was in Florida. Now, many people who use dating apps lose interest if they can’t meet up as soon as possible. But for Fava and Silvester that just wasn’t the case. They built a relationship on frequent and meaningful conversations, even if it was over the phone. 

After around three weeks of talking, the pair finally found a day they could meet up: January 1st. New Year’s Day,” Silvester said.“It was like the first day we could possibly have met each other and we’re like yeah, let’s do it. So our first-ever date was on January 1. And it was like we already knew so much about each other.”

After a failed restaurant reservation, the two found themselves at a smaller restaurant. But the venue change didn’t dim their night. Filled with recollections of their winter breaks and bustling conversation, there wasn’t a second of first-date awkward silence. 

“We didn’t say I love you or anything like that for a long time but just like the butterflies that I felt on that first day,” Silvester said.

In a romantic turn of events, they did eventually dine at the originally planned restaurant. And as fate has it, this was the day they exchanged “I love you”s. And it was perfect.  

“It just melted into this moment where it just felt right,” Silvester said.

Although that night was the first time they said the words out loud, Silvester had loved Fava for a while. His affection for Fava had manifested subconsciously, in a way it was always there. 

 “There wasn’t a specific moment when I knew I fell in love with Julianne,” Silvester said. “It was a collage of memories and moments.” 

Memories and moments Silvester plans on spending the rest of his life developing. Coming into a full circle, Silvester proposed right next to the couple’s favorite bench. 

“As soon as I had planned to get married, that was the only spot that seemed feasible,” Silvester said.

And she said yes. 

Sunshine, Ice Cream and The Office. From their very first conversation, the pair agreed on the simple magic of those things. And if they hadn’t taken the download of faith, they would never know that they did. 

“I get told so often that I’m a lucky one, and I am so lucky,” Silvester said. 

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About the Contributors
Lydia DeBord
Lydia DeBord, A&E Editor
Lydia DeBord is a firm believer that Pluto is a planet. Most of her personality is stolen from Lorelai Gilmore or Taylor Swift. Outside of Room 300, Lydia can usually be found ingesting insane amounts of caffeine, reading mystery novels, or binging Grey’s Anatomy. She is ecstatic to broaden both A&E and The Communicator as a whole!
Kate Groves
Kate Groves, Journalist
Kate is a Junior at CHS and is so excited to be joining the Communicator for her first semester on staff! In her free time, she loves playing soccer, participating in musical theater, reading, listening to music and being outdoors. She is an avid Taylor Swift fan and can be found re-creating her performances.
Elle McCreadie
Elle McCreadie, Journalist
Elle is a junior at CHS and this is her first year on staff. Outside of room 300, you can find her playing guitar in her room, drinking a matcha latte, or contemplating buying concert tickets. Elle loves spending time with family and friends, swimming in lakes up north, and doing absolutely anything involving music. She is super excited to see what this year in Journalism brings!

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