Death never seems final until it strikes someone close to you. Suddenly she goes from being a person to a collection of memories. I know now that I'll never see her again, not even by accident. She's been more a good friend's friend than my own... part of the same circle, we've shared tiffins and friends.. She and my friend, they shared a name.. I think that made them closer than any one could imagine. By the time we passed out of school, they were practically one entity. We always spoken of them in the same sentence. And I spoke to my friend today and she sounded bereft... "There's only one of us now, ya.... Nobody needs to call us by our initials any more.... There's only one of us left..."
She danced her way through life.. she danced her way into our lives in the seventh grade... and though we drifted apart over the years, our paths met, crossed and parted again...She'll dance again... I know she will.. Somebody who loved the idea of love, she was to marry in a few months time... I called her crazy when her Michael Jackson obsession made her scratch his initials on her arm...laughed at her, laughed with her and shook my head sometimes when they played hooky... I remember shooting rubber bands at her in class, and her uncanny way of popping into photographs... I remember her covering for me (who could only serve really good) in a crucial volleyball match.. I remember the exaggerated "Bambaiyya" accent she used a la 'Rangeela'. Today, I'm not remembering the reason why we grew apart.
I'm aching today for my friend. For the one who's here and the one who's not here anymore. For dreams left undreamt and a life left incomplete. For the ones who have to pick up the pieces and move on. For the void she's left in the lives of those she belonged in. I'm aching for a boy left heartbroken and a family left grieving for their little girl. For people like me who're only left wondering why we never mended those cracks when they first appeared. I'm wondering whether she saw us all, all over, praying for a miracle for her, and now trying to believe the reality that we're trying to grapple with - a reality that doesn't have her in it any more.
Dear friend, be at peace where ever you are.