It had finally arrived- the moment of truth. My parents had come home. I was practically bouncing on my feet waiting for them to climb the stairs to my room-I didn’t go down because the internet emphasises on home ground advantage. I had this entire conversation planned out. I was going to be cool, calm and collected and would present them the evidence I had collected and stun them with my theories (all of which I had high hopes for); but of course, life doesn’t work that way because the minute I heard my door handle rattle, I ran over to the door and pushed it open and pulled them in. I couldn’t be blamed for that, because spending long hours under a white ceiling surrounded by plain white walls does make people impulsive (I know my room is boring, but it’s just because my parents hate anything that holds memories or something…we don’t have pictures on the walls or in albums, so in all fairness, my room matches the theme of my house- anonymity).
Back to the matter at hand; my parents sat on the bed looking at me like I have two heads, so I just did what every other mature teenager would do- I stuck my tongue out at them. That got them to chuckle slightly, but the atmosphere becomes tense again when they noticed the cardboard box sitting innocently on my carpet. Nobody spoke for a while and the silence was getting really uncomfortable. I was just about to talk myself, when my mother sighed and gave me a resigned look. We were finally going to talk about it.
It took a good two hours, a box of tissues, lots of tears and some pop tarts for the story to finally complete. But even then, I couldn’t fully grasp what I was hearing.
Our parents had been best friends in college and had been neighbours all their lives. When you and I were born, we had apparently taken an instant liking to each other and were practically inseparable since then. We did everything together and even had a faux wedding when we were six years old! It was like a little cliché best friends story. Well, it was, until a few months after I turned nine. The two of us were walking down the street eating ice cream, when you were apparently teasing me about being a coward because I was a girl. Obviously insulted, I decided to walk across the highway all by myself to prove my courage. What happens next is probably predictable, but I’m going to tell you anyway.
A car jumped the red light and slammed into me, throwing me a few feet. You being my hero ran toward me and were holding me and screaming until the ambulance and our parents arrived. I had passed out on impact, so I had no idea what happened next, but they said that you were crying for days…I was in a coma for six weeks and had severe head trauma. When I finally woke up, I remember the doctor asking me who I was, but I didn’t know. I couldn’t remember anything. I started panicking and the doctor had to forcefully put me to sleep. The next time I woke up, I was alone, but not for long because two people I did not recognize walked in and the woman started crying, saying how happy she was that I was alive. The man had suspiciously wet eyes, but apparently that was my father, so I didn’t blame him.
It was also during this time that my brother stopped talking to me and my parents had longer absences at home. Not that it was their fault- doctor’s orders. He hadn’t wanted anyone significant from my past interacting too intimately or familiarly with me because it might have led to severe headaches and nobody wanted to risk that. He had suggested that only for a short while, but it just became our new way of life.
Your family on the other hand moved. I didn’t understand why because you didn’t make me fall- the reckless driver did, but none of the adults listened. My parents were holed up and stubbornly weren’t talking to yours and the apparent hostility forced you to leave. There were no numbers swapped or letters sent…it was a melancholy affair.
But I don’t blame you. I never did. It wasn’t your fault. You didn’t ask me to cross that road- I did it myself. You were the one that talked to the paramedics and held my hand even though I couldn’t feel it. You cried for me when I couldn’t remember you. And you came back; even if it was 8 entire years later.
I love you Ravi and I forgive you.