You must have heard of the usage “Whirlwind romance”. Something similar has been on my mind for about a year now – “Whirlwind friendships”. I can see that the coinage has been used as a blog topic by a couple of other bloggers. One of them sounds a lot like me and even has the same WordPress theme as mine. Thankfully, their definition of “Whirlwind friendships” is nothing related to mine and so I guess it is safe for me to write about it without looking like a “blog thief”.

So yeah, when I talk about “Whirlwind friendships”, it is in the same way we talk about “Whirlwinds” – come along from nowhere in full force and go away just like that, leaving you feeling broken in the process sometimes. I don’t know if you are able to relate to what I am talking about here. I have had two or three friends like that, one as recently as a year ago.

I still can’t place how we became friends. In fact, one of them was a person I hadn’t even met although we have had a lot of mutual friends and I had heard a lot about him. With all of them, it was like we talked and before we knew we were close. Close would be an understatement in fact. It felt like we had known each other all our lives. A lot of experiences and likes we shared were the same too. In some ways they were my counterparts and in some ways they were very different and complemented me. Maybe that’s why the comfort level was very high from the beginning.

I used to wonder how we became so close, so fast. It was pleasantly surprising. It really seemed like they would go on to be my closest friends although they had not been in my life for long. They were part of my everyday life somehow. It was not really an effort from our side. They would be available when I was and there would be something or the other that we would find interesting enough to start a conversation on – sometimes silly, sometimes serious. Probably it was the frequency of our interaction that made it seem like they would be around always.

And suddenly one day, they were gone – without a word. The worst part is that I didn’t even know that they were gone. I would send them a stupid link and some funny observations about it. Or I would send an update about something that had happened in my life. It was never a desperate attempt to contact them, just an innocent mistake. I was acting normal because I didn’t know they were deliberately staying away for whatever reason. It was only after a while that I would understand that they were avoiding me. The first time someone did that I realized it quite late and then I got really upset wondering what had gone wrong. We were friends one day, we weren’t the next. I used to keep rewinding to see if they were hurt by something I had said or done unintentionally. But the reason remained a mystery.

The first person who did that came back later and I tried being gracious for some time by trying to be friends again. But soon I found that I was not at the same place as I was before with him. In fact, I don’t think I really wanted him in my life again after the way he had left once. That experience did not stop me though from having a couple more “Whirlwind friendships” – my mistake. But maybe because of the first experience I was absolutely fine when they left. I never even tried to think about the “why” behind that. It didn’t matter. In a way, they didn’t matter anymore either. And now when these people try to contact me again I don’t put up a pretense of being gracious. I just avoid their calls and messages. Finally I am at a point where I can safely say that I am done falling for this again. I guess I am at an age where I have enough and more close friends who have stood the test of time. There is no place for someone new in the “close friends” zone anymore.

I should probably end by thanking some of my friends including Hari who came into my life like this and became extremely close in no time and took me by surprise. But the difference between them and the “Whirlwind friends” is that they never left me. With them, the whirlwind turned into a soothing breeze at some point and stayed on, their love and care enveloping me and keeping me cozy. After all, in the long run, it’s only fair for one to love the calm of a cool breeze than the destructive force of a whirlwind.