Catching up with school friends and college friends always brings backs tons of memories – the good, the bad, the ugly, the embarrassing – and so many times after endless conversations I often go back thinking I wish I had done things differently. I wish I had not said all the things I said back then, I wish I had not held myself back, I wish I had let go, I wish I had expressed my feelings more often, I wish I had been more honest and forthcoming. I wish I had more clarity in my thought and my actions. I wish I wasn’t as confused as I was then. It amazes me that my friendships have lasted a lifetime – I must have done something right.

Over the years I have grown tremendously as a person – my thought process, my approach and attitude to life. I’ve learnt to balance my emotions and I know I have matured with my experiences – the good and the bad. I have become eerily rational and a lot more open minded. I have learnt (albeit after falling flat on my face tons of time) to not get affected by the way people change or behave. I take pride in the way I handle my emotions especially when it comes to tough situations – I have rarely panicked. I know I have changed as a person – I’m still my old cheerful self but I’m not the person I was when I was in school or college. Even in appearance – I’m not the geeky, tomboy, skinny lass I was – I pay a lot more heed to how I look and what I wear. I feel great when I look at myself today and it gives me the added confidence. It feels wonderful when friends and colleagues at work compliment me on my dressing style, eye-makeup and accessories. My mom has always had an amazing sense of style, she has a wonderful eye for everything – be it her lovely collection of saris (which everyone in my family will die for to own), her accessories, her household items – she is the epitome of simplicity and elegance. Until I got married and even few years after that I was a complete antithesis to my mom in this department but today I realize I’ve had that gene of hers hidden in me which is now taking shape. I never thought I would develop an eye for home decor but I did (mom’s hidden gene sprung up once I had to do up the home from scratch). Today I can proudly say that I have done up my little abode beautifully and visitors to my home do tell me so.

So when my friends and family whom I meet after ages tell me I haven’t changed at all – I’m at a loss to react – I don’t know what to make of it. In one way I’m happy because they are telling me that they took to me for the person I was then and am still the same; but then I also feel a little disheartened because I’m happy I have changed and that the folks who would actually notice the difference simply don’t. I have changed for the better and  I sometimes wish they would notice it and tell me so.

Anyone of you ever been through a similar dilemma?