Friends

I wanted to make this post a Faux Post. Like faux chiffon, faux georgette. A faux post, where I just excuse myself from doing a proper post. Too tired. But then I decided against it. I want to do this blogging challenge as seriously as possible. So here is my post for today with F- FRIENDS

One of the major by-products of being grown up is that I am left with hardly any friends. I had a lot of friends till I got married. Around the same time many or rather most of my friends got married. Everyone got busy settling in their new lives, and so did I. Then work took its toll, and I was in touch with very few of them. In 2011, a year after I moved to Gurgaon, my BFF relocated to the US, permanently. We were friends since 2004, and though we would meet rarely, we were constantly connected over phone. Both of us knew that this movement of her would end our almost daily conversations. Time zone difference is a difficult thing to manage. However, we still stayed connected- though the call frequency became like once a month or once in two months and sometimes even more. However, since best friends are best friends, the connection is still the same, and we can just call up each other and start with our story right from where we left. I still feel that we are very connected and that is a good feeling.

Other than that, almost all of my other girlfriends got busy with their lives. Only one is here in Gurgaon now, and we meet up like once every six months. I had a lot of guy friends too. I was in touch with them till I had Kavya. Post that I got busy, and I realized they also got busy with kids and work and family, and now I realize that I am hardly connected to any of them. We do speak over phone on birthdays etc., but it is definitely nothing close to how it was. With one of them I still connect frequently, mostly over chat as he is in the US. He is also the laziest of us all, so when in India, it is almost impossible to meet him.

Why am I writing this post today? Off late I have realized that among other things in my life I miss having friends at this stage of life. The past few years just whizzed past and I was too busy with my kid to miss anything. But now that Kavya is also growing up, I miss having any friends around to hang out with or to do a heart to heart conversation once in a while. I miss having people with whom I could go out for a movie or a coffee or just chill on a weekend. Husband is there, but you need an outlet from the monotony of domestic life. We have some family friends, some of husband’s friends who are now my friends too. But the friendship with their wives is not “hangout” worthy. The last friend I made was in 2008, on an official trip to Mumbai where I met R, and we immediately clicked. She stays in NCR- but around 50 kms away. Has a 2 years old and a full time job, and a joint family. So meetings with her are also not more than annual. I think our requirements from relationships also change with time. Like, the other friend who is in Gurgaon, was my batch mate in college. We would speak to each other for hours about anything and everything under the sun. She was always the less chatty one, and also with a very low entertainment quotient. However, the friendship survived because we connected on a different level. Today, I do not see that connection. May be we grow in different directions owing to our priorities in life.

The other day I was talking to husband, and we discussed, how I am totally friend-less. Even he has few friends, but he managed to make good friends with people in his office. So he has a couple of people to hang out with whom not only does he connect well at work level, but they are well meaning people who have become close friends. I on the other hand failed to meet likeminded people at work post R, and now I miss having a friends circle. It is not that I do not meet new people, but among many other things which suck as we grow, forming new bonds is also one, and is quite up there. I interact with Kavya’s playgroup moms, through a wassap group of course, have also met a couple of them, but no luck.

I am not sure if this front of my life will sort itself up in the near future. I am not sure how to end this post. Just say-All the best to me!

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Girlfriends

Some time ago I received a forward on one of my Wassap groups. One of the very few messages floating on these social groups which I instantly loved. I realized that I was nodding to most part of it. Read it. Every line may not be entirely true, but the write up on the whole is so apt.

A young wife sat on a sofa on a hot humid day, drinking iced tea and visiting with her Mother. As they talked about life, about marriage, about the responsibilities of life and the obligations of adulthood, the mother clinked the ice cubes in her glass thoughtfully and turned a clear,sober glance upon her daughter.

“Don’t forget your girlfriends,” she advised, swirling the tea leaves to the bottom of her glass. “They’ll be more important as you get older. No matter how much you love your husband, no matter how much you love the children you’ll have, you are still going to need girlfriends.

Remember to go places with them now and then; do things with them. And remember that “girlfriends” are not only your friends, but your sisters,your daughters, and other relatives too. You’ll need other women. Women always do.”

‘What a funny piece of advice,’ the young woman thought. ‘Haven’t I just gotten married? Haven’t I just joined the couple-world? I’m now a married woman, for goodness sake! — a grownup. Surely my husband and the family we’ll start will be all I need to make my life worthwhile!’

But she listened to her Mother; she kept contact with her girlfriends and made more each year. As the years tumbled by, one after another, she gradually came to understand that her Mom really knew what she was talking about. As time and nature work their changes and their mysteries upon a woman, girlfriends are the mainstays of her life.

After almost 50 years of living in this world, here is what I’ve learned:

Times passes.
Life happens.
Distance separates.
Children grow up.
Love waxes and wanes.
Hearts break.
Careers end.
Jobs come and go.
Parents die.
Colleagues forget favors.
Men don’t call when they say they will.

BUT girlfriends are there, no matter how much time and how many miles are between you. A girlfriend is never farther away than needing her can reach.

When you have to walk that lonesome valley, and you have to walk it for yourself, your girlfriends will be on the valley’s rim, cheering you on, praying for you, pulling for you, intervening on your behalf, and waiting with open arms at the valley’s end. Sometimes, they will even break the rules and walk beside you. Or come in and carry you out. My  mother, sister, sister-in-law, “sisters,” extended family, and friends bless my life!

The world wouldn’t be the same without them, and neither would I.

When we began this adventure called womanhood, we had no idea of the incredible joys or sorrows that lay ahead. Nor did we know how much we would need each other. Every day, we need each other still.

Today I spoke to my BFF after a long time. She stays in the US with her family. We speak hardly once in a month or so, but whenever we connect the chat is always very fulfilling and satisfying. I cannot but agree 100% with the above write up. With time I have realized that the more you grow old, the more you need a friend with whom you can share anything and everything under the sun, WITHOUT any fear of judgement. One person, in front of whom you can bare it all, without any fears, without any reservations. One who knows your secrets and more importantly knows how to keep them. I met my BFF friend around 10 years back during my first job in Delhi. We were in the same team and worked together for around six months. After which, I moved cities, but we stayed in touch, as time passed our friendship grew stronger. Stronger in the sense, that I can call her anytime of the day and start from precisely what I want to discuss without giving any build up, and I know she would be all ears and she would understand. Even if we are connecting after months. Then she left the country for good, and our phone calls became even rarer. However, the connect was still the same. I could still call her and come straight to the point, and I knew I would be not only heard but understood perfectly too! And this is the part of my life which I simply love! I am so glad and so thankful to God, that I was given an opportunity to forge such a beautiful bond with an individual, who shares my wavelength to such a great degree.

She is my only BFF. I have many other friends, I am really close to quite a few of them, but she is the only one who is my alter ego. I am most comfortable talking to her. Especially with passage of time I have realized the importance of having a female buddy, with whom you share a healthy bond. One who gets you totally, and is nonjudgmental about you, who would empathize with you as you trace the path of womanhood, motherhood, career, family and the various other expectations and demands life has from us women. And as I say this I also need to mention, that I have had some wonderful guy friends. People who have stood by me through thick and thin and been my real support system at times. They are really amazing friends and I am very thankful for that. However, as time passed and I graduated from being a single woman to a mother, I have realized that there are many things, which only a woman can understand, about another woman. No matter how strong your bond is with your husband/ male friends/ relatives, you still need that one woman in your life who you can turn to, for comfort, assurance, help, advice and support in matters of life. I think age also has a lot to do with it. With responsibilities you discover new dimensions and challenges of life and not every time are you equipped to deal with them head on. You need a support system to help you sail through, and your girl friends are a very important part of this support system. They may not always be there to help you physically, but their support and the fact that they know what you going through makes all the difference.

I will ensure, that I pass this wisdom to my daughter and ask her to cherish the friendships with her girlfriends for life.