Today, as I stand staring at what I feel may turn out to be the biggest turning point of my adult life, it is important for me to know my foes from my friends.
This is not an article as much as it’s a question – Why is it, emotions that we grow up thinking we will encounter from our foes, we land up receiving from our friends in grown up life? and in friends, I include our co workers, team members, peers, acquaintances, neighbors, lovers, husbands, wives and even relatives, parents, siblings, children….and myself.
Envy, jealousy, anger, hatred, deception, lies, manipulation and other such emotions are not what you associate with a friend when you are kid playing in the park, having family dinners, attending school, sharing your first cigarette or your first love. Those festivals you celebrate, those events you attend, that game you watch, a shirt you buy….not in any one of those moments, the thought comes to your mind that even remotely suggests that one day these same people, you included will be faced with dangerous fault lines that would threaten to break everyone’s heart.
And yet, this is exactly what happens. Was it always like this? Of course we all know about Brutus but there was a time, not so far away, when I saw a friend of my father’s from a small town visit us in our posh south Delhi residence. He was a man of modest means and a friend from my father’s very early working days as a medical rep, stationed in a small dusty town in North India.
However, that day, as I saw them meet, hug and talk, I did not witness an ounce of any of these emotions that I am talking of. This was 1984. I was only a teen with my head firmly in the clouds but even I could perceive the love that night. It was true as was the respect, admiration, concern and support. The emotions that we do grow up thinking we will encounter from our friends.
Over the years, I saw that love grow and quite effortlessly. Yet, as I started growing up, I found myself often in the middle of these invisible cross roads, where I had to choose between facing the ire of a friend or taking him out from my life altogether. There just was never another option. Not that these friends or I did not try. God knows we did but it was never meant to be.
And yet, I grew up believing exactly that. I believed that there will always be an option. We will always rise above any fault lines that may develop between us. We, our relationship, felt invincible. Indestructible even. But when the axe struck….it all crumbled like a stack of cookies we once shared from the same kitchen.
Of course, today they tell me that it is also possible that the very reality I perceived as a kid of how it should be with friends was not a reality at all but just my perception of a reality. A perception, fantasy even. It seems logical but I don’t want to believe that.
I don’t want to believe that because I can’t. I can’t because, all the wisdom, maturity, practicality and hardness that we acquire as we grow up, does not make us capable enough to comprehend and accept that. No matter how many times it happens, between who and how badly, one still finds it unbelievable. I do. I do not believe that it was a skewed perception; I believe it was a reality. Maybe a reality that we cannot see anymore but a reality nevertheless.
Like I said, this is not an article, it is a question I need an answer to.
Today, as I stand staring at what I feel may turn out to be the biggest turning point of my adult life, it is important for me to know my foes from my friends. So, do help me by sharing your thoughts or if you do have an answer for me…..
This article originally appeared on amitmehra13
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