Here is something I have learned from being one of those people who maintains lifetime acquaintances (half the people I know are people I’ve known from pretty much infancy till now), YOU NEVER REALLY GET TO KNOW A PERSON IN THEIR ENTIRETY. Of course they say in order to really get to know a person, past that sugar coated, enameled first layer, you have to be thrown into a difficult situation together. Although I think the situation does not really have to be difficult, I think any extreme situation serves the purpose. You know, have two people share an extremely emotional moment, or a moment of total ecstasy (not the party drug kind mind you, although that might work too except neither one of you will remember anything past the blackout), or a moment of unrelenting pain, whatever extreme situation you can think of. And yes, most often than not, you will get a peek into the person that they really are (just as they get to see a part of you), but the truth of the matter is, today most people are very aware of what is considered appropriate behavior and what is not. In any case, should one person be in a lot of pain, or very happy, it becomes almost instinctual for the other person to share in that emotion. To be happy for another person when they are happy isn’t an option, it’s a requirement if you want to appear sane and be accepted. But then these ‘illuminating random moments’ happen, moments that are otherwise very usual normal moments if it weren’t for that awkward blip one person commits, throwing an unexpected amount of light onto their true personality. A far from comforting amount of light the incumbent would otherwise never ever consider.
Do you feel an anecdote coming up?
Well, you’re wrong. I do have an incident that has obviously inspired me to make this post but for personal reasons of the emotional kind, I shall refrain from telling you exactly what happened.
I will however say this: the thing I learnt from this week’s ‘illuminating random moment’ is that you will never really know a person, their thoughts, or their intentions completely. It does not matter how long you’ve known the person or how close you’ve considered them to be. It could be because a person’s thoughts and intentions are as elusive as everything else in today’s world. I know because I am no stranger to these changing thoughts. On the one hand I believe no person ever really changes, but then they also do not remain exactly the same. The unfortunate part about this however is that in the process of this transfiguration you may end up hurting some people. People who have always believed to have known you just as they think you know them; people that have based on your closeness and respect for you maintained some level of expectation. Some great expectations in my case. But the thing is, and this is where Buddha kicks me in the derriere, you shouldn’t have expectations at all. Having expectations is a reflection of your own selfishness. No expectations equal no disappointments and less pain. I know I will not be able to stop myself from caring about this person but atleast I know where I stand with them, and what they are truly like. One insightful glimpse is all I needed. No more expectations, certainly not those of the great kind.
This Shakespeare fellow was quite clued in to the best ways to live life 🙂