An ode to the ground I walk on

We have been walking together for the past year and 11 months, you and I.

Thank you.

You’ve carried me through, excuse the cliché, but the highs and lows over the last two years. In many ways you’ve remained the only constant, come rain come sunshine. 

You’ve held my feet as I’ve sung along to sometimes Darling from 7 Khoon Maaf and sometimes Come on Eileen by Dexys Midnight Runners. I sing well, right? Okay, you don’t have to say yes to make me feel better. But you do agree on how visceral the moments of us discovering new songs and the meaning of old songs have been. Do you remember when we were blown away by Prateek Kuhad singing main apne hi maan ka hosla hoon in Saansein, or how we cried when we were listening to Amy Winehouse’s Back to Black album?

And all those nerve-wracking, goosebumps-inducing podcasts we listened to? I think our favourite ones were the true crime ones, and the conspiracy theory ones, and the mental health ones. Okay, most of them. Podcasts and music and voice notes from our favourite people.

Heck, we’ve even written so much as we’ve walked, a big shout out to Google Docs. 

You, my dear ground, have carried me as I’ve sobbed, laughed, and spoken to myself. Still and steady. Through probably the most terrifying experience of psychosis I’ve had: when I heard loud voices, and things zoomed in and out of my vision, and everything was moving just too fast. You laid your arms out to me when dare I say I was smackdab in the middle of my addiction to weed. Can one be addicted to weed? You tell me, my dear ground. You held me steady when I said to myself: it’s just a little bit of alcohol. And then, journeyed on with me in my 6 months and 23 days of sobriety. 

You know all my secrets. How I utter out loud the frustrations of the day, or how I wasn’t exactly looking forward to going to a wedding, and how terrified I was of going to Dubai. You supported me through it. And welcomed me back, just as kindly. We’ve prayed together, for sanity, for stability, for balance, for the pain to stop. We’ve cried together, and gone through both shitty, shitty and happy, happy things together, haven’t we? And look how far we’ve come.

I can’t stay away from you. 

And you, surely my company must mean something to you. The thud thud of my feet. Vans sometimes, gym shoes sometimes, sandals sometimes. We’ve walked many, many miles together. 

Thank you for being my friend, when I didn’t really know how I could be friends with myself. For loving me, laughing with me, singing with me. Keeping me steady when it was all spinning, you remember right? Please tell me you do. 

And gosh, do you know how much it angers me to share you? How can someone else be sharing their time with you? No, I don’t care that they are old and this is public property. You’re mine. We have something, and I know you feel it too. 

Don’t be shy now. 

We’ve been friends for really really long. You, me, the plants, the cars, the bikes, the croaking frogs, the mud, the windows, the tube lights, the red light, the lights from the buildings far away, and the sudden darkness at 21:45. 

We are a team. And a pretty great one. 

When we are spending time, why should we be interrupted by neighbours that scream down the phone? 

No, please. 

Ours is sacred time. I know you think so too. You do, right? This is us. We. Me and you. You and me. 

You remind me to step one foot in front of the other. I play games with you: walking only on the horizontal bricks. See? We have fun. We do. So this is an ode to you. Thank you for reminding me to take one step in front of the other. For being there. Being here. 

I love you, my road, my path, my constant, my steady, steady love.