A Curse of Carelessness
Friendship is a bond that is kept alive by the warmth of one’s love for one’s friends, and by the extent of one’s devotion to its affinity. It is as strong as is the love of the friends for each other, which nurtures it, and as binding as is their devotion to each other, which sustains it. Today however, most of us are taught that friendship is merely one of the many beautiful and ideological phenomena that one simply experiences as a part of one’s life. Something which gradually loses its charm as one grows up to enter one’s practical life.
Most of us find ourselves concurring with this belief in our later years. As life progresses, we begin to believe that our busy routines, our more than hectic schedules, our work-load, and our familial duties do not allow us to have the luxury of spending time with our friends. Time and again, we tell ourselves and our friends that due to our overwhelming commitments, it simply escapes our minds to call our friends back, to send a courteous reply; explaining our being busy, or just to inquire after their health in a few words. Such self-deceiving lies belittle our friendship, and eventually, it becomes a fragile bond, whose frailty is unknown even to those bound by it. Consequently, every thirtieth of July is globally celebrated as World Friendship Day, so that we could appreciate the delicate significance, the ocean deep mystery, the rock hard strength of the sincerity of this wonderful relationship.
Dear friends, there is no bond as precious as an honest friendship. While it is true that honest friends understand each other and tend to remain friends, even across the ever-widening gulf of time, it cannot be denied that some of us let our friendships dwindle into the shadows of time, Let them be consumed by our ignorance to the laws of courtesy, and our unconsciously growing indifference. Under the burden of our other obligations, we forget that to be remembered by somebody, to be a confidant for someone, and to be acknowledged as special for another person is to be greatly honored by them. For just as we are bound by the constraints of time, so are they. But their love and devotion, loyalty and dedication to our shared relationship is such; that even against the swift flow of time they still manage to cling-on to their, our friendship. Keeping in touch does not require much. All it takes is a few words spoken in even fewer minutes. Every now and then we can talk to our friends on call, inquire after their health, and ask them what have they been doing lately? And if a friend reaches out to you, return their calls and messages in kind. If you are busy, tell them curtly but kindly that at the moment you are occupied, and that you would call them later. And make sure, you do. True friends understand each other. They wouldn’t mind. For they know that you would keep your word.
Such small but considerate gestures become the very soul of our friendship, and guard it against the erosion of time, something that we seem to have taken to be an inevitability. And if we are not capable even for such small gestures, then we and we alone are responsible for murdering a part of ourselves which is a mark of our humanity.
If we do not protect our friendship from such an erosion, then we truly deserve the sad but expected consequences of our carelessness as is expressed by Charles Hanson:
Around the corner I have a friend,
In this great city that has no end;
Yet days go by, and weeks rush on,
And before I know it, a year is gone,
And I never see my old friend’s face,
For Life is a swift and terrible race.
He knows I like him just as well
As in the days when I rang his bell
And he rang mine. We were younger then,
And now we are busy, tired men:
Tired with playing a foolish game,
Tired with trying to make a name.
“Tomorrow,” I say, “I will call on Jim,
Just to show that I’m thinking of him.”
By Talha Masood
Assistant Communication Officer, HDF