Five years ago, I came across a person on a parenting website and then stumbled upon her blog. It was a very chance meeting and to this day, I wonder at the forces in the universe that must have been working overtime to make it happen.

In the short time that we’ve known each other, I feel like we’ve known each other forever! You know those memes about couples completing each other’s sentences? We do that!

Shailaja-and-aparna

I’m not much of a TV watching person but I do love chat shows as much as the next soul. My mom told me this week about the new show Yaaron Ki Baraat on Zee TV which will air from tomorrow, October 8th.

When I clicked on the preview and saw that the first pair of friends to be interviewed would be Amitabh Bachchan and Shatrugan Sinha, I was chuckling with delight. I admire these actors for their talents as well as their tongue-in-cheek humour!

I then thought about what makes Aparna and me such good friends and so many little things came to mind. Humour is an integral part of any successful friendship and learning to laugh at oneself is equally important. That photo of us above, I recall, was one I tagged as ‘Surf Excel smiles’. You can just see the way we are dazzling in it!

We have the same pet peeves, well, most of them. We dislike sms-lingo in formal communication; we find most social media wars pointless; we have the same parenting challenges since our kids are almost the same age and so we used to take off together and drown our woes in pizza and chocolate mousse at our favourite haunt.shy-and-aparna-1

We both love books and literature and literature fests (of course!) Remember this one from last year’s Lit Fest in Bangalore, Aparna? See? I wore shades keeping the sun in mind. So much you need to learn from me, wouldn’t you agree?

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We love taking selfies together as you can tell. It doesn’t matter how disheveled we look or how deep and dark those bags under our eyes are.shy-and-aparna-4

She’s among the few people who can lift my spirits on a dull, gloomy day. I don’t even have to think about it. All I need to do is send her a message. It’s incredible because usually, a message cannot convey how low you feel. But she’s got a sixth sense. She can tell right away that something is amiss. I’ve never had anyone go so far out of their way to try and cheer me up, other than my daughter.

Shailaja and Aparna together

All friendships also have flaws and ours has a BIG one. If there’s one thing I absolutely dislike about our friendship at the moment, it’s that she has moved far away. Out of the country, imagine! I simply detest it! I can’t just pick up the phone and meet her for brunch anymore. I can no longer drop in at her place unannounced for a cup of tea and a long, leisurely chat.

But I am immensely grateful for the technology that keeps us connected every single day. We chat every day, call often and even if we go days without talking, we’d know there’s an important reason for it too. We strike the perfect balance in terms of acceptance in a friendship.

Aparna, you’re the reason I continue to blog so openly and passionately about a number of topics. Without your encouragement, I’d have thrown in the towel and stopped working on my memoir a year ago. I’d never have taken up fitness seriously if it weren’t for your motivation.

I don’t think Thank You is an adequate phrase for the emotions I feel as I write this post for you. If anyone knows of a term that will encapsulate that depth of love which wholly consumes you when you think of a person, makes your eyes mist over wishing they were within arm’s length, helps you laugh out loud at the memories that you’ve made together, do let me know.

I’d like to use it for this woman who came silently into my life and has become an indelible part of it for all time to come.

 

13 thoughts on “A Friendship that Blossomed Online

  1. Indeed your post made my eyes misty….reminded me of my friendship with my dearest friend who is going through a personal loss and stays in the US.And not a single day passes without me regretting not being with her -helping her sail through this crisis in her life!

  2. Best friends who met online! They are such a joy! I have one such best friend in my life currently. Unfortunately, we have never lived in the same town till now! 🙁

    I love the pics you’ve shared. So many ‘:D’s!

    1. Aww I hope you get to spend more time with your best friend in the same city soon! He he, these are less than 1/10th of the pictures we have together. Else it would have been a photo essay 😉

  3. Two lovely pretty smiling girls! Hugs! It is always so heart-warming to read about relationships that bloom and grow. I love the name of the TV show and can’t wait to see it tomorrow!

  4. A wonderful from the heart post and a great example how online friendships can translate into absolute life-lines. Of course a lot comes from the fact that you are an open person and are ready to share a lot of yourself. That is perhaps why you find so much friendship (and, unfortunately some negativity too!!) online. Glad you focus on the friendship. Love both of you.

    1. I think you’re right about that: being open brings in plenty of good and a bit of the bad as well. Just like life. Aparna, you, Shilpa, Rachna, Vidya and a few others help me focus on the friendship above everything else. Thank you!

  5. You are indeed lucky to have met your ‘soul sister’! That’s the term I use for two of my closest friends. They just drop into your world from out of the blue and make a permanent place for themselves in your heart. And how helpless we feel without them! Lucky, aren’t we?

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