Best friends and best friends forever..

Today’s daily prompt was on best friends. 

I seem to be (re)evaluating friendships and relationships, a lot lately. Actually that isn’t true. I have been doing that in the recent past, the immediate past and the current present has me completely letting go of all things that bind me down. It isn’t going great in case you were wondering, but that’s the ultimate goal. To be able to let go to the point that I still care but not bound by it.

ITS FRIKKIN DIFFICULT OK?

..AND I WENT THROUGH NOT ONE, NOT TWO, BUT THREE *NATURAL* CHILDBIRTHS WITH NO PAIN MEDICATION, AND AM SAYING THAT THIS BALANCE IS BLOODY DIFFICULT.

There! That balance is hard. For me.

Not for my best friends, though. They are marvelous little jugglers, with a genetic disposition of the long matted hair saints in the Himalayas, or a sleepy gecko in the caribbean. I switch according to how much I love them at that moment.

I am a useless loyalist. I really only have the bandwidth for one single friend at any given point in time. If you are thinking “wow” – let me assure you, it isnt a safe place to be. Not that the friend in question will cheat on you, which is a whole new rant in its own, but that situation and life is a b*tch and no one really is responsible but people change and times change and so the relationship goes through some subtle to crazy chemical reactions and no one really knows the outcome of what each of us go through while storming it.

All my school life, I had just one friend. ALL. I had friends, but she was my soul mate. I break into tears even now when she pings me or we talk just a bit more than the usual “life is crap, but whatever right? type of talks.

In college I had one more. I cheated on my bestie from the above. Serves me right. Coz I know karma pays back and I have paid for that heavily. I had one other girl bestie whom I related to more. It was great. She moved on after college and we occasionally talk, but she went through a tragic life changing event last year and has since blocked her away.

Also anyone who tells you earth is flat and there is the internet and its so easy to be in touch is A CLUELESS LIAR.

I didnt really have a good BFF for a while after moving here to the US.

Then I found her. She still is, and she makes me feel so comfortable and so at ease and I love her to death. Since two years, we aren’t in touch as much as I would like to just because of life and physical distances etc, but every time I meet her my eyes light up and I am very happy. I truly wish I could spend more time with her, but we all know time is again another slimy b*tch.

What this BFF taught me was that being BFF wasn’t two-way. Just because she is mine, doesn;t mean I am hers. It isn’t mutual, and it doesn’t have to be and yet, it is okay. Took me forever to learn that.

Don’t you just hate (re)learning things as an adult, but the funny part is that we learn the most valuable lessons as adults. Not as children.

I also think guys make great friends. They are the best actually when all you want to do is talk, and if you want to hear the truth, and not be judged. I’ve had some pretty awesome guy friends, mainly online, and they’ve all floated in and out of my life, just like we drifters are meant to.

Only catch with them is that they go get married. Then that wife hates you. She will never act out the fact that she hates you, she will never breathe a word about you, she will stand at a safe distance and smile if she has to, not at you, but her husband when you land in their life. She will ignore you and make you feel like a worm and unwelcome and essentially screw with your mind so much that it takes a herculean effort to NOT shadow that with what you have with the guy. Of course the guy will have to keep the wife happy and well, that’s then then for you, the sucker friend.

It’s again WORK, to look beyond and tread carefully and tightrope it etc.

Who likes to work and consciously? Sigh.

Or they go have a baby.

Or a dog.

Men are single track minds. So asking them for time when you want to quick chat or run something by you is perfectly okay, but once they get married, it is never the same.

So there goes that dow that draining sinkhole.

So yes, what was the prompt again?

“Do you — or did you ever — have a Best Friend? Do you believe in the idea of one person whose friendship matters the most? Tell us a story about your BFF (or lack thereof).”

Yeah, I do think friendships rock. They, like any relationship need work, and both need to want to be there. It needs to be watered regularly. It needs time, and space and trust and mutual respect.

For folks like me, who invest heavily in that one single relation-at one time; it’s an emotional drain and fear that we live in constantly. Coz you learn to recognize the signs. You block them, but there they are badgering you constantly. Then you know. You just know it, when that heart sinks just a bit low when you wake up one day.

…and then you wonder, will it be awhile before someone else comes along, will it be quick, will it be painful, and will it last long after the embers are dead, and you just know that life will go on. The wheels will turn and sometimes slow sometimes faster than u can cope, but they turn and you will hobble along with or without your BFF next to you, but the memories will always stay with you.

 

my baby zeph

It is 3 years today, on Super Bowl Sunday that I got the best birthday gift, ever. I bought home my black and white Border Collie-Norwegian Elkhound pup. She looks like her dad and behaves like the mom, playful, fun, excited and amazing with kids.

I worked through her potty training, through a few chews here and there, but for the most part I/we lucked out. *I* wanted the pet. I grew up with two and I knew that there was no other childhood memory that would come close to quality relationship that one could give as a parent to their child, and I insisted, fought, got threatened and dint care and I went to Petco and signed up with Forever Home, and we got approved and on a fine, chill yet sunny morning, we ran back in to the store at 1 after a tiring morning at dance school, and were handed us this round small black furry thing.

me and zeph

She smelled and wiggled in my arms, but I was impulsive and happy.

My munchkin was very happy coz I was happy. Daughter was happy coz she liked pups. Son continued to live in his bubble, refusing to associate with anything apart from his books and room lest he was tagged to do a chore and the husband was the biggest surprise. After putting up an enormous almost juvenile front to not allow a pet in, he drove over behind us to the store, to smile and pet the pup in my hands and now is the primary sole caregiver with respect to walks and feeding and the bond they share is strange, wonderful and unique.

It’s responsibility and care wrapped in loyalty and affection. Both ways.

She took her time warming up to us and to me, and now is probably the most affectionate she has ever been. Over the past months, she cuddles up to me, gives me and only me the special wag she reserves, the way she glues herself and pushes her neck into my knees or side of my leg, and the way she sits patiently next to me as I stroke the top of her head. We are in tune now. She knows when I call her for food, for getting the Furminator on her, when I want to take her for a walk as opposed to when it’s a car ride, that she doesn’t love, but has grown to tolerate. She understands the incessant runs I make through the day, doesn’t blink or look too sad when we leave her at home, and is always happy to see all of us walk back in. She knows her peanut butter treat is coming. She understands Telugu and English as much as she understands our tone and the reactions of people who come in. She understands my strange need to play dress up with her. She accommodates, and is always patient, allowing various props to be placed on her while I click and record the moment.

rockstar

 

She is a lady though. Elegant and restrained as the situation demands, right from the way she takes a cookie from my hands, ever so gently, slowly, barely touching my skin, but just the object of attention, to the way she sits down at the door or window, as she watches the world, and the squirrels go by.

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Always excited to hear the doorbell ring (and we have a TON of traffic), she jumps to welcome folks, and immediately picks up on their signal. If they are scared and hesitant, she backs down right away. Edging closer and closer, inch by inch till she is seated next to them, ears tucked down and wagging her tail ever so gently, till they feel comfortable about stroking her head.If they are petrified, she sulks, walking away slowly into the study next to the front door, and sits there waiting for them to move on or away, for the most part not even needing the command.

If they are dog lovers, well, we have a hurricane in the house and so much joy.

But when they leave, they all compliment her, praising her, knowing that she is ever so sensitive to us, for how well behaved she is, and almost sitting on the fence to become a dog owner. She converts people, and influences them. Every person, who has met her once has gone a changed person, even if just for a bit. Mostly happy and smiling, but also bewildered, coz their perception is slightly altered on what it is to have a dog from the shelter become one of your own.

It’s all her, and we are lucky to have found each other.

Today is Superbowl Sunday. She will sit with us downstairs and watch the game, and hogging chips and cookies alike and couldn’t care less on the outcome of it, just that the house will be full of teenagers yelling and screaming at the large white screen with sweaty running men whose eyes are hidden.

I don’t know about you, but that’;s just not right.

Coz she speaks with her eyes and when she looks at you, she bores into your pair to touch and reach your soul and heart. That ever so slight tug, and that heart is never in its stable place ever again.

Then she does this thing that she never does with anyone else but me. She sits and waits to be stroked. I hold her face in my palms, bend down and kiss her jaw, and head and stroke her. Cooing unintelligible nonsense to her as she wags her tail. I stop to pick up my coffee, and her paw rises quickly, to grab whatever she can of me. My thigh, my calf, an arm, anything, so she can ask for me to stroke her again. To touch her again. We continue this dance till she is happy and satiated.

Begging

..and I wonder. There is no ego, no loss, no hesitancy, no demand, but a simple ask.

She wants the touch. She wants to be petted. She asks. I give. She gives in return.

Now, if every relationship would be as simple as that, the world and life would be a lot simpler. Then again, what would be special about the bond you share with your pet?

Ergo.

front row view

There was a time when front row seats were avoided like the plague. seats would get filled from the back row. That’s where the fun was. Am obviously talking about school and classes. Front row was for the nerds and the goody two shoes. Or for the ones who came in late.

Then we grew up. Somewhere some soul decided to raise the bar. I am guessing the person was a long suffering booted to the front by the class bully individual. It all comes back to haunt you. The jeers, the jokes and the teachers’ inevitable large blind spot, even if you were an amazon in the land of dwarfs and were doing bird calls with your hand raised for an answer. Maybe it didn’t hit home that it was precisely the reason they were in the front row in the first place!

I attend a yoga class religiously and there are some regulars and then there are some who float in and out. I realized the other day I was a front row person. It came as quite a shock that I would actually want to be right up there under her nose doing the downward dog, instead of disappearing into the shadows and hoodwinking on the downward dog.

This didn’t home until yesterday when I was buying recital tickets for munchkin’s Jazz performance. For some reason, which will remain a million dollar question left unanswered by most of us, recital tickets for ballet and jazz schools get sold out within hours. No, am serious. For that brief 3 minute appearance of a munchkin wearing the exact same dress as at least 15 others around her to do a hop and a skip, entire families spanning a couple of generations assemble in the middle clutching roses. The talent is the last thing on anyone’s mind, and along with the smiles, the general accolades that flow for that brief stint, the school/studio reaps it all in.

Okay, am being cynical there, and yes, I’ll grudgingly agree that one cannot force a dollar value on your precious pumpkin’s centerstage appearance.

So, I walk into the studio to live up to my parental duties of coughing up the necessary dollars to seemy munchkin pirouette around and what do I see but a paper FULL of gray. What? I exclaim. Yes, says the lady being the counter with an air of nonchalance subdued only by forced politeness and tolerance to the parents who have invariably sighed and gasped at the lack of good seats for the performance.

What are my choices? I ask.

Having just trooped back in from a fieldtrip in the warm mute sun minding wandering 7 year old girls in a SEA of 7-8 year olds from all over the area (not just the school), I was in no mood to make small talk or cackle my way into any respectable position in the audience.

She points a sharp pencil to the very first half empty row and then the very empty back row on top of the balcony.

Wow. I exclaim. I’ll take two in the front.

I pause. Really? Two in the front. I’ll be seeing up their beige stockings. Maybe I should go back after all. I’d get to see formations and the colors and the straight lines the tiny bodies form. Sure, it would take me a full minute to win the “spot the munchkin” contest between me and my husband and before we can hone in on her like parental hawks and grin, she’d be bidding us goodbye. So I flipped the decision a few times in my mind.

Yes, I’ll take the two in the front.

I’ll see my munchkin up close and she will see us up close. She will wear a grin and we will wear our grins and that moment alone would compensate for the $30 check I wrote in a swift motion before I could change my mind and whine.

There were one too many other things I could choose to whine about later in the van ride back home.

Front row seats.

Now I am a conscious by choice front row seater. I don’t mind not knowing the answers to questions that may fly at me anymore. I do know I’ll get the view that I will enjoy, may not be the best view that most of the world wants or cares for, but my eyes will love what they see and for that I will bear the cross of the front row.