“Promise”. It is a simple word yet it means so much to us. It’s a feeling of safety, of reassurance, like a warm shelter on a stormy night. We keep promises in hopes of protecting each other. It seems like keeping a promise is way harder than breaking it. It also seems like promise is the highest degree of trust for humans in this world. Our feelings, emotions all depend on this one single string dangling, the pinky fingers entangling each other like twines:

“Pinky promise?” I ask and you humbly nod and repeat it, leaving me with a sigh of relief.

We promise for better days, we promise to keep secrets, some deep, some sweet and innocent and others, dark. Humans are layers and layers of secrets, and we chose to show only certain versions of ourselves. Keepers of promises bare the baggage of silence, sometimes it’s a toll, other times, it’s worth it. We promise, promise to stay, promise to be better versions of ourselves, promise to keep others happy, promise to love if that’s even possible, promise to reach for the stars in galaxies, which seems more likely to be possible. But don’t be afraid of promises, rather be afraid of promising no promises.

This sketch that I made is of chihiro and haku from my favourite anime, Spirited Away which has a very special place in my heart. It was successful in delivering its emotional and spiritual message and an interesting trivia about the movie was that it had no script. “It’s not me who makes the film. the film makes itself and I have no choice but to follow.”said Hyao Miyazaki, the famous Japanese animator.
When Chihiro asked Haku, who she barely even knew, if things were going to be okay, Haku calmly placed his palm on hers and said “it will, I promise.”

The sort of reassurance, the warmth and homely feeling that Chihiro must’ve felt in a land where she knew no one at that point, all the emotions that a single word could beckon is something that’s always resonated with me.

I feel that promises make life happier. It makes me feel content and mellow. Promises are hopeful, and sometimes all we can do is hope. So promise me that you’ll make promises to keep them and not break them. When everything seems like a lost cause, I entangle my pinky finger with yours and promise you, it gets better.

Khushi Bagri
(Batch 2022)