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I know this email will come as an utter surprise to you and I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to muster enough courage to send this to you.
The 12 years that I have spent in your company as your best friend are unforgettable for me. Every moment spent with you was special. Those school bus trips, those movies after bunking the school, those gossips with friends, those nights of combined studies, those sports competitions and our cheering squad. We have had tons of fun all-throughout our school life. But there was one place where I could never fit in. There was one area where I felt weird. And this had always been my most guarded secret – that I never felt attracted towards boys.
It felt something wrong, something missing in me when all my friends were going crazy about boys and the importance from them, I only felt irritated when a guy tried to hit on me. Any boy, no matter if he was the most handsome or a loner but he made me feel very irritated! Kunal was the only guy that I felt comfortable talking to. I used to feel very easy with him, he never hit on me. In fact, he was a close friend and a confidant. All you girls thought that there was something between me and Kunal, but there wasn’t. I was not lying to you on our school farewell, when you made me swear on your life to know if I loved Kunal. No I didn’t. I couldn’t. Even the idea of kissing him on lips used to make me feel weird.
Lara, it was hell for me. To feel accepted in our all-girls group where every girl was somehow involved with a boy and I didn’t understand how. I didn’t understand sex. I didn’t understand how a girl can stand naked in front of a boy and let him touch her. The thought would disgust me. But I was so scared to say this to anybody, for everybody around me was super-excited about the topic named – sex.
In spite of all this, I felt comfortable with you. Not that I told you my thoughts on romance and sex, but you looked like a normal girl to me who did not give much importance to boys and who only loved to mind her own business. Your studies and your basketball – that was all that you cared for. Of course, I was an important part of your life too; I was your best friend. I remember the first time you mentioned anything about a boy; he was from our coaching classes, the guy named Nikhil. You told me that you liked him but did not have courage to go tell him. Lara, you have to trust me that I tried my level best to understand your feelings for him, but I could not. I tried a lot to be a good friend and guide you into wooing a guy, but I did not know the feeling. I was confused to my core. I knew that there was something wrong with me, but I had no clue what that was.
It was me who painted a dirty picture of Nikhil in your mind. I did not like the idea of you going around with a guy. I felt responsible for you. I felt protective towards you. I felt that a guy would probably hurt you in a way that I won’t. I did the first bad thing in my life – lied to you about Nikhil and his family. You were hurt but your feelings for him had turned into something sour. I had no clue what I was doing. I was only trying to protect you from – boys. I did not trust them.
I can never forget that evening of our farewell. Oh my God, you looked gorgeous in that black saree. I could not take my eyes off you and for the first time I realized that I liked your beauty. I liked the fact that everybody was appreciating your beauty. I felt like screaming at the top of me voice – yes, this is Lara, the prettiest girl and my best friend. Did I ever tell you how amazing you look with your hair flowing down and twinkle in your eyes matched with your perfect smile. Nothing made my world more beautiful than you.
Where every girl in that farewell party was worried about looking the best, I was concerned about you looking the best. Where every girl in that farewell party planned to go out with some boy out to party, I looked forward to spending the night with you. It was my plan to make our parents agree for a sleep over, it was my plan to destroy every other girl’s plan to be with us that night. I wanted to be with you – alone.
Though, I knew that my behavior was very different than other girls and that I felt very protective towards you, I still had not realized that how badly I was attracted to you.
We were 17 when we joined the same college, the same hostel and decided to take the same room. Nothing had ever made me happier than to share a room with you. Your little touch, your small hug, your little peck on my cheeks used to make my day. I remember you telling me that I should be sleeping in my own blanket, but I couldn’t – I loved being close to you. I did not know what was happening to me, but I had to hold myself from just reaching out to your body inside the blanket numerous times. I used to look at your slightly open lips while you were sleeping and it was so difficult for me to not put my lips on them. It was difficult, Lara. Very difficult!
I was confused, I felt guilty for feeling like that for you. I hated myself for being what I am. I was depressed. It was a very particular day when I found the word “Lesbian” on internet and for the first time understood the real meaning of who I was. Everything changed for me then. I felt so cornered, so alone. I couldn’t tell this to anybody. It choked me from inside to feel this way. I felt rejected and cheated. I felt that there is some right that has been denied to me.
I was so depressed that I made a distance with you. I was scared to lose you. I knew you were in love with Gaurav and that hurt me even more. I was so jealous of Gaurav, that I almost wanted to kill him. But I also knew that it was me who was wrong. It was me who had to take brute of this punishment. It was me who was not “normal”. You and Gaurav were probably the best soul-mates and nobody else could keep you as happy as he does, not even me. I realize that now. I know that now. But I was depressed, Lara. The damage was done. And so I went away from you and Gaurav and I was stupid enough to believe that I could forget both – the love for you and hate for Gaurav by being away from both of you. That was silly. I could never forget you. I could never stop thinking of you.
I know I have hurt you so much. For you, I was that best friend who would have been by your side listening to all the exciting stories of romance between you and your boyfriend. You expected me to be there for you and listen to your love for Gaurav. It wasn’t your fault, Lara. But you were far more than a friend for me. I could never be “just friends” with you. I was in love with you, madly in love.
So, after college I decided to go away from you. I decided to not keep in touch with you ever. I changed my number, my email id; I deleted my facebook account, just so that I could never get in between you and your life for my selfish love. I came to know from various people that you were very upset after I was gone. I know you really trusted me, you believed me to stand by you always. And I could not keep up to your expectations. I couldn’t be a good friend to you because I wanted to be your lover. A lot of people told me how desperately you tried to look for me. To find out where I was and to find out what really was wrong with me. All these years, I never even had the courage to confess my love to you. I felt so wrong in doing this. I felt so guilty.
After college, I was so lost in my own confusion. I was so perplexed about my own identity, that I indulged into everything wrong to escape this rejection. I got a good job in a MNC, but I wasted all the money and time in running away from my frustration. All the nights were wasted in indulging in alcohol, drugs, tobacco and false friends. I tried a lot to get over my frustration but all the wrong ways. And I am not ashamed to say that I even got involved with other girls physically, it was important for me at least to realize that there are many more people like me.
In this futile attempt to get accepted in this world or rather accept my own sexuality; I was also trying to forget you, to not love you anymore. None of this happened, but meeting more of my kind, I realized that it wasn’t alone. It gave me the strength to live on, to accept myself as I am, to not loath myself, to not punish myself.
Then something drastic happened in my life. I met a girl named Reema in one of the clubs. I had never realized that a girl of my kind could be so clear of her purpose and her actions. I never knew that a girl who only loved another girl could love herself so much. Reema is around 15 years elder to me and she has been my ideal over all these years. She is the one I look upto. I want to be like her, clear in my head, not degrading myself to a lower being. Reema is living with her partner and she is very happy with her. Reema and Neetu make a great couple. They both have so much love to give to each other. Everybody is welcomed in their lives, yet nobody is needed. Both these girls give utmost to each other. They have moved far beyond the boundaries of this society. They have gone way beyond the thoughts of this conservative world. They have accepted themselves as they are and they are free to be their own selves.
I have moved on now. I have learned to accept myself. I am on my journey of discovery and happiness.
Lara, you must be wondering why I am telling all this to you after years. You must be thinking that I just disappeared from your life when you wanted to share the most important phase of your life with me, why would I want to come back now? I just want to tell you all that I ever felt for you. I want to apologize to you for running away from your life without a word. I want to clean up my heart before I head out in a new direction of discovery, joy and acceptance. I cannot start this new life with a baggage of guilt on my head. I hope you won’t get upset with me. I hope that you will forgive me for hiding so much from you. I hope that you will not hold anything against me from now on.
All the best for your married life! May you and Gaurav give each other lots and lots of love and respect! I am very happy for both of you. I will not be there to attend your marriage, but both of you will always be there in my prayers and my heart.
I hope I have the courage to send this email to you. I hope this email doesn’t stay in the drafts section of my inbox.
Love you always,
This letter was not delivered to Lara for a long time. Lara and Gaurav got married recently after this mail was drafted. Kiara went off to Germany to settle there and followed her heart. She finally found her soul-mate, a German girl – Nicole. She found true love in her and decided to live there with her forever and ever.
Nicole found this email in Kiara’s drafts after a year of their relationship. And she did what Kiara could never do. She hit send button on that email. Though, Kiara hated Nicole for doing this, she thanked her deeply when she got a reply to that email from Lara. All that Lara wrote was that she still missed her best friend and is still waiting for her. She also sent the picture of her, Gaurav and their 2 months old baby boy.
Today, these two couples make a great group of friends. They love each other, accept each other and stand for each other.
All that love and friendship means to them is – acceptance.