Three days ago I met someone who bolstered my pre-existing ideas about detachment. And it was almost a relief, because I had been walking around with this theory in my head since ever, but I didn’t really know if it was something I had come up with for convenience, or whether it was real.
“Which school did you go to?”
“Air Force Bal Bharati, for the last 3 years of school.”
“You’re kidding!! Me too! What are the chances?!”
We found out that we were both ‘armed forces brats’, who constantly moved.
There was a lot more conversation about cities, and if we had more schools in common. We didn’t. We discussed how Modern School used to beat us. At everything. And how much we hated ‘Modernites’. I was back in 1998.
Then she mentioned something about being socially inept, in the conventional sense of keeping in touch. That piqued my interest. So I asked her what she meant, and she said that she had this inability to stay in touch. Regardless of how fond she was of the person. “It’s not like I don’t care, I do, but I feel like ‘I’ll see you when I do’. I don’t see a reason to pick up the phone and ask you how things are. I’m sure they’re fine.”
I was certain I was saying those words. I wasn’t. She was. I was just nodding in such wholesome agreement, it’s a wonder my head didn’t fall off my body.
Detachment becomes a default setting.
It’s because you move so much, it’s practically a new set of people who you have to call your own every year. How does one get attached? And if you do, isn’t that heartbreaking? Lose friends every year.
I’d rather just….. not.
So, it’s all about the moment. You’re there, surrounded by people, it’s all kinds of fabulous, you move away, meet more people, lather, rinse, repeat. Buddha would be proud.
Then comes the question of longing. For a place, a person, a fleeting moment in what seems like another universe. What then? How do you tackle that? Left hook, right uppercut and hope for a knock-out?
I let the feeling sweep over me, like a massive wave, drenching me in a memory so real, I can almost taste it. That’s one way of dealing with it.
I haven’t tried the others.
The thing is, all these people and places matter. More than I allowed them to believe, more than they would ever know. I needed to hang on to every word and every road I came across, because I wasn’t sure I’d come across it again. So I clutched on to it, with all my might. For forever. To call my own.
Is there a need to let everyone in on it, constantly? I don’t know. I don’t think so.
I could be wrong.
The constant craving for permanence and the absolute disregard of it. It’s an endless battle. The dichotomy of want and want not.
You want to fight against a certain classical conditioning, but, you don’t know a world outside it, so how do you address it? Awkward handshake, avoid eye-contact, focus on your shoes, and just be everything you’re not.
That can’t be right.
Stick to classical conditioning?
That can’t be right either.
I don’t have a clever answer for this.
I don’t have any answer for this.
I guess I’ll find out when I do.
And I guess I’ll end this self indulgent post now.
To Shrödingers cat & beyond…..