BACK TO SCHOOL DAYS

By Deepak Bhansali in Stories » True Story
Updated 12:24 IST Apr 16, 2020

“You know what? Teenage is such an interesting phase of life! When we were in our teens, our minds were pure and hearts innocent. Our life was like a random stone from which we would try and carve out a beautiful sculpture. We had no responsibilities to shoulder. We didn’t have to think before we spoke. We were like free birds, wild, strong, and fearless.” I was talking to one of my dearest school friends. Thanks to the lock down and Facebook, we were able to get in touch after thirteen long years.

We spoke about our respective lives after school, our perceptions about life, and about our ambitions. We also discussed about our respective marriages.

“Anyway, tell me, what is the one thing you would want to do if you could go back to your school days?” She asked.

“Confess my feelings to my first love - my school crush.” I replied without any hesitation.

“You liked someone in school! I did not expect that!” She was surprised.

“You know, during our school, we might be too naïve to even understand the meaning of love but we all fall in love - a sincere love. Irrespective of whether we were a topper, a back bencher, a grumpy kid or a shy one, we all have at least one innocent and incomplete love story to tell. Some managed to confess their love by writing a letter or conveying their feelings through a friend (and end up getting a tight slap in return) while some could not gather enough courage to even speak with their crush. Some love stories start off but end with a sad farewell. Only a few stay true to their love and become partners for life.” I replied.

“So which one were you?” She asked again.

“You should’ve guessed it. I was so shy and clumsy. An utter bookworm. Mine was an unexpressed and unknown love story.” I confessed.

“You were a free bird right?” She pulled my leg, mischievously.

“But that free bird was a prisoner of the fear of her rejection. I didn’t have the guts to approach her. We were in the same class. One glimpse of her would make my day brighter. I’d always sit in such a way that would let me easily watch her smiling. That million dollar smile would be like a cherry on top of a cute face. On Sundays, I’d roam around her house expecting to see her. I’d try to impress her by smartly answering questions in class, participating in all the extra-curricular activities which she would also be a part of, clapping enthusiastically in appreciation of her speeches, and so on. And the funniest part was, I’d never attend school on Rakshabandhan.”

“Wow! That’s quite a story man. But why do you want to confess your love now? You are married, right?” She sounded puzzled.

“I feel it’s unfair to compare relations. Every relation has a separate existence in our soul. No one is more or less important. We never forget our past; we store each story, each person, each feeling deep in our hearts. Those stories won’t affect our present but if at all any story was left incomplete, then we get a feeling that something is amiss. 

So yes, I am happily married and I love my wife, and I don’t want my school crush to be back in my life in a romantic way. I only want to let her know that once upon a time, someone, somewhere loved her. She must know that. I didn’t have the courage to confess my love back then, but I have the audacity to do it now. It won’t change anything, but deep down, in the heart of my hearts, I will be able to give justice to my first love.” I replied.

“Unbelievable! That is an unheard and unprecedented perception of love. You must confess your love to your school crush.” She said, excited.

“I just did that.” I smiled.

Slowly, a smile broke on her face as understanding dawned on her.

 “I don’t have the words to express my feelings. Thank you for making me feel so special! And you know what? Even I liked you! Actually, somewhere I had sensed that you were trying to impress me but even I wasn’t courageous enough to disclose my feelings to you.” She confessed.

“Now, this confession completes our sincere and unfledged love story.” I concluded.

We both shared a light laughter; a laughter of fulfillment and gratitude towards life.

I may never meet her or talk to her again but if at all I ever meet my 16 year-old-self, I will proudly tell him,

‘Dude, she liked you too.’

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