So I was in college and things had gone awkward for me. Some of my closest friends had chosen to ignore me for reasons best known to (or decided by) them. People wouldn’t keep me a part of their conversations. They would laugh on inside jokes and have discussions which I had no clue about. Such ridiculously childishness I had seen before only in teen movies where girl gangs make female protagonist’s life a living hell for not ‘being one of them’.
But that wasn’t the case here. Barring one friend, who I believe only spoke to me out of sympathy, the rest of my then ‘group’ ignored me. In fact I clearly remember each incident that day as it took a lot out of me mentally. You don’t just randomly see your closest of friends ignoring your existence and that to out of nowhere.
I was never a ‘have many friends’ kind of a person. I always believed in having a core bunch of close friends who would stay by you thick & thin. Probably it was all the ‘FRIENDS’ I used to see back in the day. But yeah, I believed in putting all my energies into a small circle of friends rather than divide my attention among many people. I refer to it in the past, because that habit in the past as that has now changed. I’ve learnt not to depend upon someone so much that they’re absence can affect you.
So returning to the incident, it’s after lectures and the time when we would sit together in the campus and hang out till post-lunch was here. I was feeling the vibes that something is wrong, but I didn’t know it would go to such an extent. At the end of the day was when the water went above my head. As I awkwardly hung around with my then buddies ignoring me. I added to a funny conversation by saying something about a friend. And everyone, apart from that friend react aggressively to how I try to create rifts between them all.
One of my first friends in college, who had this awkwardness of not having any female friends initially, jumped as a protector of some of our female (accusers) friends (whom I had introduced him with in the first place). So I’m being argued at, accused of causing rifts when all I did was crack a joke on someone who took it well.
Okay, at this moment this is very difficult for me to write about as I really cared for those set of friends…until that moment of course. The conversation blew out of proportion and ignoring continued. Which made me wonder things like ‘Why am I still hanging out with these buggers?’ ‘Have I no self-respect?’ ‘What can I do to make them realise they are wrong?’
At that point I had no idea what I had done to piss 90% of my group off. The day ended and the next day I sat with my then close friend, now girlfriend; who missed the festivities the previous day due to her odd arrangement of lectures. I told her about the stuff that went down and I had no idea what was wrong and how to deal with it. She saw how upset I had become, (yes I cared about certain things back then) and she advised me to take part in the festivities of my college’s annual festival. Her reasons being, I’d be so involved in other things that I wouldn’t care about the issues of my friends, I would meet and interact with more people and the major reason was to get some happiness & excitement back in my dull, friend-dependent college life.
I said ‘Hey, why the fuck not?’ and participated in my first college festival (after aimlessly attending three years of college), and at the end of the festival I had a huge boost to my confidence, a respect among fellow team-brethren, a lot of aspirations, and even a cult-following among juniors (no exaggeration whatsoever).
And after the stuff we went through to make our house win (oh yeah, we were crowned the best house out of five). The arguments and group-politics seemed a little too juvenile and trivial. That one conversation with that special one put me on a path where I discovered my career, made some close friends I’m still in touch with, and made me a completely different person altogether. I even started this blog here and my journey as a writer during my time in the festival! So hey that’s pretty good, I must say.
Sometimes a calm conversation with a loved one can set you up on a path that alters your life completely. And obviously I mean it in a good way. It leaves you full of optimism and opens doors of possibilities. My ‘advisor’ had my back when I needed someone the most. And she didn’t give me a way to win their hearts again or egged me on to teach them a lesson. She saw her good friend was in trouble with his own dependencies and her words ensured that that would never happen again.
When things go haywire, when bad influences drag you down to their level and beat you with experience, when life gives you lemons; all you got to do is ‘Look Up’!
Note: As a conclusion to why my then friends were ignoring me, I eventually found out it was because they thought I was negative and hid things from them. Which I never felt was the case, because their definition of ‘negative’ was not agreeing with their logics. Anyway those group of buggers eventually imploded and some of them reached out to me when they were left friendless. I obviously didn’t turn them away, it obviously felt good to have the upper hand.
I would like to give a shout out to housing.com for wanting to hear my story of optimism; where a moment together with someone special shaped me into the awesomeness I am now. Cheers!