Best friends Athira & Shampa believes supporting each other is secret to their camaraderie
In our monthly feature #FriendshipGoals, our final story is about 24-year-old Athira Bhaskar, a wheelchair user, and her friend Shampa Majumdar. Athira and Shampa lives in Kolkata and has been close friends for the past four years. They share a very deep based on loyalty and understanding..
Athira Bhaskar, 24 years old, was diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy at the age of 15. She has beaten many odds in life, and now works as a central government employee in Kolkata. Athira, who is married, says that best friend Shampa Majumdar’s presence in her life has been one of the biggest blessings till date. Their thick bond of friendship is based on trust, loyalty and of course standing by each other.
Just like every other youngster, Athira was geared up to complete her education and fly when she was diagnosed with a disability. She left Kolkata, where she grew up, to pursue higher studies in medicine to Kerala in her hometown. But that did not work out well owing to her physical limitations. Athira returned back to Kolkata with a heavy heart. She was disheartened and had lost all hopes.
She spent a year inside the four walls of her home before deciding to join for B.Sc Economics at Vivekananda College in Kolkata in the year 2016. One of the best decisions that she made, joining the college was truly a game-changer in many ways. At college is where she met Shampa, her best friend and someone who had a great positive impact in her life.
“When I came back to Kolkata, I never used to talk to any of my friends. I was depressed and did not want to keep in touch with anyone either. That is when I joined for B.Sc Economics. I was a year late so most of my classmates were younger to me. I met Shampa there. We bonded instantly”, says Athira.
Since Shampa was staying close to her, Athira enquired to her if they could go to college and return back together. Due to mobility issues, she couldn’t manage on her own and her parents were also working. Shampa agreed readily and that is how they started spending a lot of time together, inside and outside college too. Since Athira couldn’t attend tuition classes, Shampa used to learn everything and share her notes with Athira.
“She used to pick and drop me while we were in college. We studied, hung out and had a lot of fun together. Meeting Shampa and being with her was one reason I could tackle with my depression and blues during that time”, says Athira.
Best friends for life
A few years back, Shampa had to shift her home, but she convinced her parents and managed to get a place close by to Athira’s home. “She did not want me to go alone to college. Shampa knew the hardships that I would face”, recollects Athira who recently had to move to another district owing to a government job. Needless to say, Shampa missed her friend but they keep in touch every single day!
Over the past four years, their bond has only grown thicker and their fondness for each other has increased over time.
“From the very first day in college, we got along really well. We have many things in common, maybe that is how we bonded so strongly. Together, we made memories and has always shared things”, says Shampa.
Together for a lifetime
Athira and Shampa knows that they are bonded for life. Ask Athira what she likes the most about Shampa and she says, “Shampa is innocent and very helpful. She has always stood by me when I needed her”.
Shampa, who has a handful of friends believes that some friends make a deep impact. Athira is one amongst them. “Athira has always been supportive. She is brilliant in academics too and that is something I admire a lot about her. Our friendship has only grown stronger over the years”, says Shampa. Together, Athira and Shampa has even done a trip and that brought them closer.
On 30 July, for friendship day, the duo doesn’t have any plans. Rising number of Covid cases in their area is a cause for concern. So Athira and Shampa has decided to stay indoors. “We plan to video call, we do that almost every day. But we are definitely planning for a meet up soon”, they say together.
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