Torn between the chaos of thoughts, I asked myself “How are some people so perfect all the time?. They don’t cry. They don’t have anger issues. They always have people to talk to. How do they manage to keep so many people and not lose them?”. All I could console myself with was maybe I was not meant to be a part of that social world. Maybe I wasn’t good enough as them.
But then one day, I was on my regular schedule, but had a break between classes. So I started surfing the social media. I came across people who had 500- something friends, and numerous photos with different people and partying all the time. But I couldn’t resist but ask one of them, whom I had known from a long time, about how do they have so many friends?
I came home and texted her, the conversation started all casual and then i dropped in the question, “How do you have so many friends? I hardly have 1.”. She didn’t reply for 2 hours (though the double tick turned blue). I thought I might have asked something stupid. But then, at night I recieve a long message from her. It read :-
“Do you really think they’re all my friends? Most of them might not even know my full name. I just hang around with them. Does having attended the same party and have a picture make somebody my friend? I talk to them and hang around because I don’t want to be alone. Bacause alone is comsidered unsocial. If you have 5 friends, your social life doesn’t exist. It’ll exist only if you know the 100 people your 5 friends are friends with. Thats how life works in today. Go out and see for yourself. Go and see how many people do actually know you? Yes, they know who you are, but do you know what they talk about you? NO. You’ll only know it once you’re a part of the circle.”
I didn’t know what to reply. I kept my phone aside, but then I wanted to ask her something. I decieded to go ahead and ask.
” Why do you care about what others think of you so much? Is it so important that you have to hang around with people you don’t actually know or like. It doesn’t bother me what they talk about me behind. Why is keeping a social life so necessary? You have a family, I have a family. You have your close friends, I have mine. Then why does the “Others” bother so much?”.
I waited for her to reply as the curiousity level was too damn high at that moment. Then the *ping* took the level to some other sky. The text read :-
“It does bother because I want people to know how I really am and not judge me. They just know me as a person unless we meet and they know what kind of a person I am. Thats just it. I like my life the way it is. People come up to me today and say ‘Hey, I know you’. This recognition is what I love.”
I wouldn’t really say that I was moved or started to think about how unsocial I was. Instead I felt relieved. Why? Beacuse I wasn’t weak like them. Either people are too weak to show their real self and accept it OR they’re too strong to stand up for the real them and not hide it. I belonged to the later side. And I was indeed very proud. I cannot hide myself behind a kilo of make-up and party with people to be accepted as a part of the “Social-circle”. Instead, I’ll wear my big glasses, no make-up, just a smile and roam around in my casual tees and slippers, rather than short dresses and heels. I don’t say I dislike dressing up and partying, Its just that I like to do it with people I love, not strangers who would judge me.
After this conversation, I started looking at life from another angle and with a confidence which was on some other level. In short, I’m happy being me. And so do I advise everybody to do. “Live it like nobody knows you, except the ones you love and make sure they know you love them”