Beep Beep…my phone made the sound, as if giving an indication of being alive. May it be by choice or force, these days mobile phones are our only full time companion which stays with us in all our good and bad times. And my situation is the latter one, I am usually not very fast at checking the messages, as most of the times I know it comprise only forwarded chain of messages which I just scroll through and seldom read. Today since after a long tiring day I was just lying on the bed and relaxing, listening to my all-time favorite gazals of Jagjit Singh. So by some means I took the phone and read the notification. Someone ping me in the messenger and all I could read was Hi...How are you? Do you remember me? I quickly opened my inbox and saw it was Rohan, without wasting a minute I replied ‘Yes, of course… How can I forget you? We were in same class.
It’s been eighteen long years and I suppose if it’s too long, it’s normal to have little bit of hesitation to initiate the conversation, may be because of the fear of rejection, that what if the other person will not recognize us, however somewhere deep within we are sure that the other person can never forget us. It was Rohan who found himself to be in that situation. But at the same time, I feel that no matter how many years pass some people who may not be a part of your present life, but they always hold a special place in your head and heart and it was me who was undergoing this feeling now.
To continue the conversation he asked, ‘How are you doing? I am perfectly fine (married, have a kid, working with a multinational company) in short life is settled, I said. Hiding all my curiosity deep in my heart very formally I asked, and what about you? I was so glad to hear that he was now a successful entrepreneur, happily married and blessed with two kids. We started chatting and without realizing about the time we wrote for more than two hours to each other, discussing very less about our present life as most of the time we were in flashback, rewinding our lives like a camera roll. I feel I was so at ease and could just sit and talk with him endlessly and I somehow realized that he is also very comfortable. Unwillingly we both decided to end the chat with an assurance of catching each other next day.
All these years which brought so many changes in my life my job, my marriage and my motherhood vanished away from my thoughts in a blink of an eye and I found myself as a teenager of nineties who is going to school with two tightly made plaits almost dipped in oil and coiled at the back of her head with a bow made of red ribbon, making it all the more funny and less appealing. I was a very studious child and a kind of lone wolf, so I had very few friends with whom I opened up my heart and definitely Rohan wasn’t one of them. Though I used to admire him secretly as I found that he was my type of person but never had that courage to speak to him and convey all what my heart said so I better decided to be a silent admirer. No doubt I was behaving like typical girl of that time who wasn’t ready to believe that she had a crush on a boy studying with her in the same class and moreover she will never ever dare to express herself.
As they say time is the biggest healer but in my case there was no question of healing as there was no wound. But yes definitely with time everything changes and as we get so much involved with much more important things in life, memories of golden days of past become blur and if at times we get time to look back and recall, all we do is just smile at our stupid and silly acts which once meant our whole life for us. I also never thought about him after I passed out from my school. Actually there was nothing to remember also, as we never had any conversation except few formal ones. Today all of a sudden I felt as if out of the blue I have come across a dried rose in one of my favorite book which I kept years back and surprisingly it still holds the same freshness and fragrance as before.
So finally after a long ride in a roller coaster of thoughts I decided that I’ll not bury the secret of emotions inside me and will certainly tell him about my feelings which I had almost two decades back. Though I knew there was no point in telling but maybe I wanted to make myself feel lighter with a self-realization, that at least now I have courage to do something which I could not do years back. I know it sounds funny but I guess this is how life goes, many times when logics don’t work all we need is to just go with the flow and follow our heart. That’s the time when we feel like telling our mind that I have tolerated enough of your interference, now it’s the time for you to keep shut and sit noiselessly.
Next day my messenger showed sign of aliveness almost ten minutes before the scheduled time. My situation was like a lady who was standing behind the door, eagerly waiting for the bell to be rang so that she can open the door and meet the person of her dreams. First time ever in my life I realized the importance of this small green dot. After a long wait I felt my heart started pumping more blood to my body passing an electric current through each cell of my body, leaving me in a state of shock for few seconds. Before he could write anything I wrote, “Rohan I want to share something with you. Can I?” He replied, “Oh sure Neha, you don’t have to ask before speaking to me, just be at ease and if you don’t mind can I make a call?”
He called immediately the moment I wrote yes and to my amazement his voice gave me another electric current, the signs of which can be visible as goose bumps all over my body. God knows from where but I gathered all my courage which was required to convey my years long feeling for him and as I started, I speak all in one go. He kept on listening without interfering, I wished he also have some feelings for me and will return the favor, but to my surprise he didn’t say anything except one line which changed my life completely, “I wish either of us had the courage to express our feelings that time”.
A minute of pause and silence both sides, all we could hear were the elevated heart beats which were twice its original pace. All of a sudden I found myself in the arms of the person who was behind the door few minutes back, I really felt so close to him, that I didn’t feel like saying anything and all I could ask him was, “How can two persons who are thousand miles away feel so close to each other?” He whispered, “Sweetheart, only Kindred Souls feel this way!”