“So like any other normal adult (but still had a tint of teenager left in me), I was also hoping for a beautiful birthday. But I guess my hopes started getting high way too earlier than my birthday and by the time I reached my special day, hopes started to drop and reality slapped my face.
Actually I just had 3 friends (but the qualitative ones, at least what I thought). Unfortunately they were scattered across India. Ankit (my then boyfriend) was in Hyderabad working as a software techie;
Pooja was in Mumbai for her modelling career; and Manasvi who was working for an advertising company used to stay few streets away from my apartment (which, I thought was fortunate for me).
I knew it was next to impossible for all of them to give me the smallest, best birthday surprise party together (my love for surprises which never got enough attention). But still that little hope was there within me that maybe they will come up with something what I wish for (though these hopes didn’t turn into reality). My family never believed in the gesture of surprising so I had nil hopes from them (and they didn’t disappoint me this time too).
What I realized by the end of the day was – Even Manasvi who stayed mere few 100 yards away from my house couldn’t come up and meet me (probably her work or other commitments must have hampered her plans). I was really heartbroken because her coming to my house wasn’t an impossible scenario. I felt as if she was the one staying farthest from me. She was behaving like an adult (according to her grown-ups don’t get too excited for their birthdays) and wanted me to act the same. But why shall I do that?
Even when I’ll turn 50 I’d like my closest people to surprise me with something sweet and special (not grand). I don’t feel there’s a need to act like ‘I don’t care for birthdays and other occasions’ when on the inside I love them. Maybe the things which don’t please you, are pleasing and adorable for others; Maybe these are the gestures that matter most to them. This isn’t even a too hard thing to be understood by Manasvi.
That was the time when something hit me (badly, really very badly) – Am I loosing my limited close ones too?
I have always been too scared of loosing my people, the people I love and care for. It’s because I believe:
"Life is too short to lose the folks you love and too long to grief over that loss."
Why only Manasvi, even Ankit and Pooja could have done something. In the century of parcels and couriers you can’t blame me for expecting one from you.
That’s when out of the blue a surprise hit my main door.
∗door bell rang. I took the parcel∗
Before opening the parcel, I took 15 minutes to guess who might have been this thoughtful. But as I opened it, all my guesses went in vain.
There was a collection of CDs of all my favourite songs and singers from Harshit (my college friend who was in America for his further studies).
That was the sole best part of my day. Receiving such a pleasant surprise from the least expected person. I called him (Yes I called America, least bothered about my phone balance) and thanked him 100 times for making my birthday this special. And that call marked the start of a beautiful friendship.
Doesn’t matter if you send a beautiful hand-written note or books or cake or what. All that matters is, do you at least try to make a day worth celebrating for that person. Maybe such days like birthdays or anniversaries don’t matter to you, but for some they might really hold huge importance. Respect it (provided that person is important to you).”
I asked Meera aunty “What age did you turn when this incident happened??”
She said “22 which you celebrated recently.”
She continued, “But yes what I actually learned from that birthday is
Don’t expect. God has his own ways of surprising you.
The more you expect, the more you make yourself vulnerable to disappointments. Gift yourself the things you like, pamper yourself doing stuff you love doing. Don’t depend on others for surprising you.
Surprise yourself by exploring more and more of you. “
I questioned her “So today who all make your day worth celebrating?”
She answered with a dreamy smile “Your uncle (Harshit) and I myself. All others are busy living their careers and overlooking their friendships.”
I think,getting little more thoughtful and sensitive doesn’t make you any less Modern or less of a Man (because I think some people believe being thoughtful is being feminine) or less of a Grown-up.
Don’t be too busy making money that you abandon the ones who loved and cared for you.
Growing up isn’t an easy thing to do. It needs a lot of guts, courage and heart to do so. And if you don't take your heart with you while growing up, you can never really grow up.