Right now, I am sitting in my living room of my 1Bhk apartment, wishing the cup could hold more coffee than it already does. I don’t really enjoy looking at that empty cup and having to get up and make another one all by myself. I still miss the days when Maa never hesitated to make everything I asked her to. Today, if she were here, she would do the same. However, she is long gone and I am no more home. After starting at that empty cup, I finally decided to complete what I was writing before going back to the kitchen to get some more caffeine in my blood.
Did I mention earlier that I decided to do what I love long back? Well, I did and I have stuck on that path really well. Unlike my marriage, I didn’t give up on this decision and it has brought me the happiness that was completely absent in that bond that only grew to be worse than ever. One of those things that I loved and wanted to do was weaving stories, writing for the world and I can proudly say that I started with that seven years back and I have only fallen more in love with it. Every page is a paradise and I love visiting different versions of this paradise, everyday.
Today, after nearly seven years of heartbreak, emptiness and the struggle to overcome all of it, I finally decided to narrate a life changing chapter of my life. It wasn’t just one incident that broke my heart, it was about a hundred little things that my soul could no more take that led to a major change in my not so pleasant two years of a forced bond.
I turned to a fresh page and started scribbling what I wanted to do long time back, but never had enough strength to do.
I was twenty-four when I suddenly felt like a mannequin displayed in a fancy showroom, ready to be looked upon and asked about. I lived in the city of dreams, Mumbai and my family was originally from Indore. For me and my siblings, our family shifted to Mumbai when I was only five. From then onwards, I had accepted this city as much as it accepted me. With every minute, Mumbai taught me life lessons and to have confidence to dream and to chase those dreams. My parents, unlike other people, had a firm support for all my dreams and lived life to the fullest. Until that day, I never knew they would want their daughter to be all dolled up only to be looked upon by a stranger and get questioned about everything, without being allowed to raise a single question and then get tied in a knot which she would have to accept somehow. That was the first shock of my life. In India, relatives can do a lot and mine surely did everything to push me in that marriage.
It just took one meeting to finalise our destines and four months to tie the knot. During that period of our courtship, I really fell in love with that person. He was, in fact is, all that you read in the romance books. He is the man who can give you butterflies and make you weak in your knees. I was definitely not happy with that one meeting that had power to change my fate, but because of everybody else, I decided to give it a chance. After meeting twice or so, I realised why everybody was behind me to accept him. He really was the man you dream about. All I couldn’t accept during that time was that we don’t make a perfect pair even when none of us was wrong. That meeting was followed by several dates and romantic evenings. By the time we reached our wedding date, we knew each other in and out and it seemed like we can get along pretty well.
Soon the preparations for our big day began. While everybody was busy selecting the best of reception hall and the colour of their lehengas and suits, I still had second thoughts. But I let them go anyway. It wasn’t because he did anything, it was just random intuitions I guess. Finally the day came and it was no less than magic. He literally treated me like a queen, went on his knees and became the prince charming every girl dreams of.
We were soon tied up in a knot and started our life as a married couple. Beginning was all how you see in Bollywood movies. We were like the couple who were meant for each other, doing everything to make the other one happy and planning our new life, moulding it into the best of what we could think of.
I started working after my graduation and had dreams of taking up masters and building a great career. This was the reason for having second thoughts for this marriage, but when everybody assured me that I could do that after my marriage and pursue whatever I wanted. Their assurance made me believe in our bond. After two months of our wedding, I decided to apply for my masters and filled up all the forms. Having a good experience of three years, it was easy to get into foreign universities and make my career in the world of business. Before filling up my forms, I spoke to my husband about it and that was the first time after we met, that he seemed hesitant about my decision to pursue my dreams. We had a big fight and I ended up filling my application forms anyway. And when he came to know about it, he made the matter worse by involving his family, who now had taken an about turn. No more did they support me to follow my dreams and I saw everything crumbling into pieces. I could no more stand at their place and wanted to run away. However, I tried my best to convince them. After a moment, I could no more put my self-respect at stake and didn’t find the logic behind they being so dominant in making my life’s decisions. I called up my Mom and Dad and asked them to do something. Being Indians, they could never afford their daughter’s home to be ruined and for that they convinced them and me as well to do my masters at universities here. During that phase, I learnt that sometimes nobody is there and you have to be there for yourself. I failed in being that support to myself and ended up doing masters from a university here.
During those days of university, I had to juggle between the studies, household work and deal with all the tantrums that my husband and his family threw at me. After every passing day, I saw their behavior getting cold towards me. I kept my patience and tried to handle all of it, until one day when I was accused of having an extra marital affair.
It had been a year and half that I was pursuing my masters. I had several projects to complete and had to stay away from home many a times for the industrial visits and for completing assignments. Since, I was a regular student at the university, I had made friends and there were colleagues with whom I was supposed to complete my projects. All of this is quite normal for everybody, but for my family and my husband it turned into something negative. I was always questioned about my whereabouts, about people who accompanied me and so many more. In the beginning, I was happy with what I was doing and ignored all of it. But this grew over time and there came a day when my husband became too insecure for me to handle. He accused me of having an affair with somebody who had been a great friend for the past year and half. And I could no more take any of it. I decided that it was time to part our ways and not ruin each other’s life. He wanted to have somebody who he could control and I could never be the one who would sacrifice her independence.
I went to my parent’s home and told them everything. They never knew about all of it and I was glad to know that I had them with me. After few months, we parted our ways legally and I settled in a new apartment. I wanted to live on my own and live the way I wanted to.
Five years have passed since our partition and I am more than happy. Seeing the one you love treat you like that definitely breaks your heart and I took these many years to come out of it. I no longer wish it to be a dream and be over in a second. I have accepted the reality and now, I am there for myself. I gave way to all my dreams and ambitions and made myself happy with each day.
I didn’t realise the tears flowing down my cheeks until a teardrop fell on the page I was writing on. I quickly wiped it and seeing the words settled on the pages of that diary made me feel proud of myself. After that phase, I took up several new things, writing being one of them, and did everything that I dreamed of. Every broken thing teaches you a lot. This broken bond made me a woman who is stronger than she could ever imagine to be.