Wednesday, October 27, 2010

MY BEST FRIEND.. who I loved, and lost.

 THE LAST WORD
I still remember that short, fair, spectacled girl who came to our school in the 11th grade. She was subdued, shy, and quiet and she would always sit at the exact same spot with the same girl as her partner every single day. Maryam Salman came all the way from Muscat to this little place and clearly had a lot of problems adjusting to her new life. No one in class used to talk to her much because they all thought she was a nerd. For one whole year we were non-existent for each other.
And then, one fine day, in the 12th standard, on an impulse I sat next to her. And from that day forward, things just.. changed! We began to talk and I realized how wrong people were about her, she was a total non-nerd! We hit it off from the first day and the seat next to her became my permanent and favorite seat till the very last day of school.
I loved how kiddish she was, just like me, and that she was into books and movies and music, just like me, and she was crazy and cute and funny, just like me! In fact, we were so similar that sometimes we would say or do the exact same things in perfect unison! We had even made a list of the ‘Similar things’ we used to do.
She made this little poem for me, which I really used to find hilarious:

“Astha, Astha have some pasta,
Go to hell and forget the raasta!”

Both of us were total Linkin Park fanatics and knew all their songs by heart. We could listen to and sing their songs the entire day without faltering even once (not even at the complex parts). We would drool over our joint-crush, Chester Bennington, the lead singer of Linkin Park and would talk about him and fantasize about him to extremes none could ever imagine! We even wrote a story about Chester, Mike and me during our classes; of which we were totally proud. Sometimes we would go into irrepressible convulsions of laughter whenever we were together; while at other times we would share our darkest and deepest of secrets and fears. A couple of months before our Board exams, our classes were mostly all over and we were free to do whatever we wanted to. We had found this perfect spot; it was beyond our school field besides the graveyard. It had a ditch nearby and we used to call it the ‘Pit of Acheron’. We would sit there, for hours and hours together, talking, listening to songs, writing, reading (we never studied, and mostly we just yakked away). We used to live in our own little world, oblivious to everything else around us. Being with her, I was blissfully happy and without a doubt, she had become my bestest friend forever.

She used to call me ‘Squixie’ because she used to say I look like a squirrel. I could talk to her about everything and anything, anywhere and anyhow. I was completely myself with her and never had to put up a facade of any kind. We used to talk for hours on the phone and before hanging up, we would always go like this: “Okay, bye, take care, love you, miss you, study well, all the best, bye, everything everything, myly, xoxo, bye, bye, take care, love you, everything, ua ua ua ua!” and would go into fits of laughter again!
(I should clarify here that ‘myly’ stands for “miss you love you” and ‘xoxo’ means “hugs and kisses”.)
I should also clarify that both of us are straight!

Everyday and every moment spent with her was special but there is one day I can never forget and I know even she can’t. The day was just, too perfect; it was one of the happiest days of my life. It was 7th of November, two days before my birthday. While the drills and races were taking place, we were wandering around the school premises and we came across this beautiful place. It was quiet and peaceful there. And I remember just sitting there with her, listening to our favorite songs, one plug in one of our ears, feeling the breeze blowing against our faces. It was amazing. We even carved out our names on one of the walls there. (It’s still there by the way; I went to see it last month.) When it got dark we went toward the crowds to see what was happening and we saw everybody was cheering and enjoying the ‘Gymnastics on Wheels’ show that we have every year in school. We stood there, cheering and hooting with everybody; when suddenly, they played one of our favorite songs ‘Numb’ on the loudspeakers! Both of us looked at each other and SCREAMED at the top our lungs, jumping, singing along, clapping, laughing and hugging each other again and again while the others looked at us as if we’ve lost it, for good! That moment, that was the moment when I was truly, wonderfully, absolutely blissful. She was the one who made me feel that way.

School wasn’t school without her and we always seemed to have SO much to share with each other. Like we could just talk and talk and talk non stop.
There are so many incidents I can mention, the school picnic, the time she won the debate and we celebrated, the way we used to sit and have our lunches together, the time we went to this school fete and sat on all the rides, the way she used to explain things to me and the way we used to make other feel better when one of us was feeling lousy, my birthday party (where we danced like crazy on LP for more than 10 min). I was so close to her that I never thought I’d be myself if I ever lose her. We were soul mates.

But today, she doesn't want to talk to me. After our Board exams, some misunderstandings cropped between us. I don’t even know what exactly happened, but apparently I hurt her deeply. I hurt her and I didn’t even realize it. She went back to Muscat and we didn’t speak for a long, long time. When she did come back, I knew something was wrong and that she had changed. She moved to Delhi for graduation whist I stayed back here.
She never tried to contact me again, she wanted to forget me and move on. She told me that she doesn’t want to be friends anymore because she can’t be what she used to be with me and she loves me too much to hurt me. At first I didn’t understand, I was hurt, angry, confused, infuriated and did not understand why she would do such a thing. I cried over it, hurt and miserable. But after a lot of thinking, I finally think I’ve understood.
It’s okay if she doesn’t want to talk. I shouldn’t worry about it; because that is what makes her happy. I'm sure she has her reasons and if I look from her perspective, it would all make sense to me. I can’t be selfish and demand her to talk to me. I’m sad that it’s over, but I’m glad that it happened. I’m grateful I came across her; I’m thankful she befriended me and loved me so selflessly. I know things got screwed up somewhere, but even the thought of the moments spent with her, fills my heart with warmth and my eyes with tears. I miss her, terribly, but I’m all right now. If you’re reading this Maryam, by any chance, I want you to know I have no hard feelings against you and that you will be etched into my memory forever and will always and always be my BFF.

This is something that she wrote in my diary when we were departing, when we met for the last time:

“There’s no time left now, is there Astha? No time to do those things we wanted to. No time to finish all the things we left unfinished. No time to fill up another dialogue copy. No time to sing, no time to fill up the song diary, no time to finish our ‘story’, no time to Chester-around, no time to pass comments on Bhaturia’s microscopic blouses, no time to make long faces during Math classes, no time to run across the campus holding hands, no time to sit together and talk, no time to kiss dragonfly-Chester, no time to make fun of all the so-not-Chester-guys, no hogging Priyanka’s tiffin, no wearing those shoes and that scraggly ribbon, no time to sit in the warm winter sun, no school. What will I do? What? How will we go to the Pit of Acheron? The beautiful place? Library? 7th A classroom? Canteen?
I know that you’re going to be a great successful girl Astha. You do have a really bright future. Don’t mess it by holding on to the things that have passed by. Cherish it, yes, but don’t let it hinder your steps. You’ll grow out of it. Stand up to the world and face it. Let’s face it together Astha, holding hands, let’s be humble about it. Let’s look into the horizon together, let’s fly high, and soar into the sky as far as our wings can take us. Let’s make our lives what we dream them to be.”

I just want you to know: Thanks for all those wonderful moments; thank you for giving me another reason to be happy and grateful, even if it was for a short while :)
I love you and you will never ever be forgotten.


17 comments:

  1. It happens astha...friendships break, sometimes the strongest of the relations come to an end, its always sad to let go of such a beautiful relation but... i know you tried your best to keep it all together & bring her back, but people change astha. Besides you have so many nice people around you...Smriti, Anant, Samrath...and a lot more. So.. :)

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  3. Hey amazing post!! Take a deep breath chinkoo and relax ... all i can say is ... tats life!
    Sometimes things happen and u know u r not at fault, nobody is at fault ... but, circumstances, misunderstandings and all tat crap leads us into it and there is pain, hurt, longing ... i can understand!
    Go back to ur post on 20 things u r happy about :D

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    1. I know doo :*
      Thank you! I think I've become a little wiser now :)

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  4. I'm totally dumbstruck astha! How can someone write sooo well! You have totally penned down each and every emotion of yours.
    You really are a very good writer(I wish I was one!:p)
    And as far as your friendship is concerned, I can well imagine the void that has been created in your life.
    Sometimes you can't even help it to make things go better(I would really pray that your friend reads this blog of yours and realises that how much you miss her)
    The least you can do is to move on and go ahead.There are an uncountable number of friends you have dear.Just think about them and stay happpppy! :)

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    1. Thank you so much Ami! :D
      As a matter of fact, she did read this. She wrote me a short mail, telling me she loved it and wishing me good luck for my life ahead :/
      But it's okay. I miss her, but it's just one of those things you cherish even though it's not there with you anymore :)

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  5. Astha this is beautiful..!! Its like reading my story..!! Just that I was on the other side this time.. Beautifully penned down.. Just amazing.. I simply love it :)
    Brilliant :)

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  6. I know i am commenting on it after 1yr but i also cant help it...i have read it now!! Astha it too good gal!! i mean it touched my heart which forced me to comment...:)

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    1. Thank you Hina di! Means a lot :)

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  7. AWW!! I have nothing to say but glad you ended with an optimistic note :)!! That's what Life's all about!! No matter where and how we get stung,The right attitude mends all pain!! :)

    Following you.I luv yur blog.Can connect with many a things so much:)!!

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    1. Thank you Jen! :) Yes, even I felt good that in the end I finally accepted the situation.
      I love your blog too :)

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  8. Hi Astha,
    I came across your blog just like that, clicking links after links. And I concluded that this act of leisure is truly worth as I got to read this wonderful and touching post.. I could actually visualize the events, so beautifully they are penned.
    I've experienced this too, and I agree with you, thats life is all about learning and moving on, and being glad for the memories..

    Best Wishes

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  9. I think every one of us must have gone through this kind of episode at least once in a life time! But soon we learn to move on and be happier in life! I liked the way you have ended the post, yes the relationship is something worth remembering and its good to let it go :-)

    Your friend, can never be the friend she was to you and hence even if she does talk to you, you will never feel the same way about her :)

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  10. I have had a similar experience. A friend who was oh so dear to me moved away, and when she returned, she was a different person. We, too, had some misunderstanding, shortly before her departure. Today, I realise that instead of mourning that I don't have her anymore, I should be glad that I had such a friend, and that also during a very difficult time in my life. I'm glad that she doesn't talk to me anymore because I would not be able to bare the changed person she had become. It hurts that I have lost such a great friend, but it would hurt even more to try and accept your friend when she is simply not the same anymore. I don't know if your friend is still the same to you, but you should be glad, and keep those memories to yourself, while learning from your experience.

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  11. Hi Aastha,

    I don't know you but I 've heard about you from Maryam, a few times while she described her life in Agra. Maryam is the most special friend and the most special person in my life. I was just writing about her when I found your blog. She was never the kind to hold a grudge against anybody. Her positivity amazed me. Maryam and I studied together in college.

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I love it when you have a say! So, type away! :)