Few years of living and studying like sisters made us inseparable. We used to talk about everything; every single thing that we wanted to share, every single thing that crossed our minds and not to forget… nonsense and crap. No thought or feeling of mine could slip from you unnoticed. We thought we could live like this forever, or rather, as long as we could.
Yet things didn’t go the way we wanted them to go. Each of us with our own aspirations went on to pursue our different dreams. Each of us went through a year without each other. We tried to make it a point to keep in touch the best we can, yet it was not easy. We had our own lives to lead, occupied by different things out of different social lives. Meeting each other were joyous occasions, as meet ups were rare and time together were precious.
Each of us had our own group of friends. Seeing pictures of you and your friends having the time of your lives made me envy, sometimes even sad, as I couldn’t have you around me. I know you feel the same too.
It became difficult for us to know what each other was going through each day. I didn’t know whether you had time for me, and I began to bother you less, in fear that I was disturbing you, or distracting you from what you were supposed to do. Little by little, I let myself sink into the shadows, allowed myself to drift away from the centre of your attention. We don’t have conversations anymore, but exchange only a few words each day.
I kept my troubles to myself, and didn’t try to comprehend yours. Times of sharing secrets and woes, though vivid, seemed so far back. They were like something from the past. I couldn’t talk and confide in you like I used to. I went through the tough times alone, faced all the struggles with all the courage and determination I could muster. I kept everything to myself, and only shared with you good things, and news pleasant to hear. You felt it, I reckon. Some things never change. No thought or feeling of mine could slip from you unnoticed, as always.
Until then, a sentence from you jolted me.
“How are you?”
Definitely not “Fine.” What should my answer be? It’s neither here nor there. I tried to string words together in response, but failed. Way too many things were weighing me down, all of them jumbled up. I didn’t know where to start. I just stared at the message.
The phone rang, it was you. There’s no avoiding it. Upon hearing your voice, my tears fell, as I realised how foolish I have been, withdrawing myself like that, how stupid I was, shutting the door between us. Yet you comforted me, like none of these have happened, like the sister I have always had.
When ‘how are you’ comes your best friend or someone who is close to you, you have been drifting apart. You should never leave it until so late.
Cheryl Ting Cher Yuke, preferably Cheryl Plankton has an obsession towards plankton, for no whatsoever reason. A random girl with a peculiar temper, she laughs and turns red-faced at jokes and bites if you step on her toes. Awaiting the start of university life in a faraway land.
Image taken from here