So, this is my story, my friend Pasha’s and mine. I know it’s weird-Pasha, right? Well, I chose it because it’s strong and it also sounds scary! Sounds like the name of a goon, right? So yeah, Pasha and I became friends some three years back and have been inseparable since then.
It sure does feel amazing to walk in the grass, to feel the warmth of the sun on your skin, to smell flowers like the ones that are just outside this building, right? You must be thinking why I am telling you about so trivial things that you all must have experienced. The thing is….I haven’t experienced them since last year. From the day I was locked in here, in this very room in the basement of my home, these small everyday things became things I dream about now. I will do anything to escape this room and go outside and live, save one thing, which is precisely what they want me to do. And I won’t do that. So instead, I spend my days recalling the life I had before I was locked in this basement in my home.
I remember when I was a kid I used to love watching maa sitting in front of the mirror and doing her makeup. It was mesmerising. It was long before Pasha and I met. The way maa applied kajal, and mascara, powder and then at the last, her red lipstick followed by a spray of perfume. She used to watch me in the mirror observing her. When everything was done she used to come to me and kiss my cheeks. I instantly rubbed them, pretending I didn’t like it. But both maa and I knew that I actually loved this gesture of hers.
One day, I had this urge of doing the ritual on myself. I applied the stuff very carefully, handling it with soft hands. After being satisfied with what I had done, I looked into the mirror and found maa standing right behind me, furious. “You should not touch it. Don’t you know you are not old enough for all this. Go, wash your face right now! ”. I had no idea what had just happened so I did what she told me to. When I came back, we both had somewhat different expressions on our faces, I, with red eyes and big tear drops around in them, she, with a pained smile. “Come here, you. Don’t cry.” I sat on her lap. She caressed me and said in her soothing voice, “You know how expensive all these things are. What if something had broken down. Your father would have been angrier than I was. So, don’t repeat it again. Please! Okay?”
I agreed. Every morning after that although I sat there, during her morning ritual, watching her getting ready I observed that pained smile on her face. Thus, gradually, I stopped looking into the mirror altogether. I suppressed that urge to sit there, watch her get ready and imagine myself doing that one day. And soon realised that my presence beside her during that time would enfeeble me.
After this incident, I learnt to live with that feeling inside of me but things changed when I entered my mid-teens. This is the time I started getting attracted to boys. All my friends already were in relationships, so I pretty much knew what it was to be in one, but I lacked the experience. So, when my lazy hormones finally woke up, I knew all the do’s and the don’ts. But when reality dawned on me, I realised it wasn’t at all easy. I just couldn’t do it. I got all nervous and ruined it even before anything could be initiated. This is when I met Pasha and found solace. We have been inseparable since then. Pasha made me realise why it was so difficult for me, why guys enjoyed my friendship but never even thought about being in a relationship with. Pasha made me realise what was wrong with me. Or should I say what was right in me and wrong in others?
They wouldn’t let me out of this basement because they want me to deny my existence, my identity. They want me to live a fake life. And I. Just. Can’t. Do. That. So, I am ready to live here, in this basement, being me than to go outside as someone else.
So, this is my story. My friend Pasha’s and mine. Pasha and I, who are inseparable because Pasha is nothing but the voice of my soul which is keeping me sane. Pasha made me aware of who I truly am. Pasha wants me to be me and not someone who I look like. Pasha is the one who made me realise that I am a girl from heart and soul and not the boy that others see in me.
So, this is not a story about my friend Pasha and me. This is a story about Pasha, who’s me.