It was a sunny Monday morning. I had a meeting with a friend on the other side of town so I decided to take a bus. It was a long queue and the buses were not forth coming. Finally, after about two hours, I got on the bus. I sat down heavily and closed my eyes. After a while, I felt movement beside me and I opened my eyes. I was dumbfounded. The gorgeous lady sitting beside me was my classmate in high school. We were juniors and good friends.
I was excited to see her, she was all grown up and really beautiful. We were meeting after many years, and that too, by chance. She had just graduated from college and was looking forward to the next phase of life. I was thrilled for her. We talked until she got to her bus stop. We hadn’t been in contact for many years and so we talked about life after high school, our mutual friends and other things.
When we were in high school I was really quiet and reserved. Mary, on the other hand was the life of the party. She was very expressive. I can never forget the pattern of her hands because she used to flaunt it in my face. She would laugh amid each sentence. She was fun to be with and adorable. A girl without worries.
But as we talked that day, I realized that she was quieter, she would smile very simply and talk without throwing her hands all over my face. Long gone was the playful girl I used to know, the one that would throw her head back and laugh at the slightest statement. That girl in high school had grown into a very cultured, very refined young lady. The girl who was everyone’s friend in high school had lost contact with everyone and was just building the new friendships she had found in college. It was like she was a completely different person, she had put her experience in high school behind her.
After she got off the bus, I couldn’t stop thinking about it all. I was excited for her but I was a little sad about the loss of who she used to be.
After that, I realized how important it is to savor every moment spent with a loved one. While growing up is exciting, I also realized it’s bittersweet because sometimes, in trying to deal with the pressures of adult life, we lose a beautiful piece of ourselves- the carefree, happy-go-lucky piece.
Other things take the front lines. With a sad sigh my friend confessed, “I guess it’s true what they say, twenty friends cannot play for twenty years.” While social media helps us keep tabs on people we care about, it simply isn’t enough because when we come together we just might have nothing to say to each other.
Now of course I know we can’t remain the same. Change, they say, is the only constant thing in life but we can remain true to who we are and make every waking hour count.