(Love etc., Mom-Dad, and Marriage – My Happy Story)
Uncertainty mars the promise of my each new love.
Will it remain a secret treasure forever buried in my heart?
Or will it transform me into a man full of regret?
Perhaps it will build me a home where I’ll live happily after.
Mom and Dad don’t understand love.
They disagree on almost everything, but they agree on one. They believe that a love-marriage is an abomination, and that marriage is a social contract to be entered in by the parents of the bride and groom. They firmly believe that the bride and groom should have nothing to do with each other until they have gone around the fire seven times and said “yes, I agree” to the incomprehensible Vedic verses chanted by the priest.
According to them, love-shove is that crappy stuff that youngsters engage in, because these days they have nothing better to do.
- According to Dad, in their time, boys would be busy helping their parents with the chores. They would feed and bathe the cows, chop the firewood, then get into over-sized knickers and an under-sized threadbare shirt, a hand-me-down of a hand-me-down, and then trudge to school, some six miles away.
- According to Mom, in those nice days of the yore, young girls would spend their afternoons and evenings helping their mothers in the kitchen, or changing the nappies of their newest brother or sister, five siblings down the line. They didn’t have time to do nayn-mattakka with boys.
This is why they never learned about my school-crush – the girl who sat in the front row of our class, whose laughter was music to my ears, and who always got more marks than I did, in every subject, every year. I didn’t dare to even talk to her, because mom knew some teachers at my school, and if she learned about it, she’d go tattle to dad, and dad would spank me with a hanger and hang me to dry on the clothesline in my backyard. She got married to the neighborhood grocer’s son, who now is the neighborhood grocer. She still occupies a small corner in my heart.
Then I fell for a girl in my college. I shouldn’t have. I should’ve seen the signs, but I didn’t. I guess I just wanted to find some love, and when she looked at me with her beautiful green eyes and that come-hither look, I just fell. And I fell hard. It was a whirlwind affair – actually, more of a tornado affair. When it flung me down, I crashed into reality – my heart bleeding. Then I looked up and saw her on another guy’s bike – the bikes changed into cars – I kept seeing her. And I kept regretting.
I was a tad broken-hearted, when I met the girl who would build a home in my heart and live there forever. I met her at the place of my work. The shroud of pain and unhappiness slipped off my shoulders and disappeared. I was almost happy once again – but uncertainty marred my happiness and stopped it from reaching its full potential.
I wanted to marry her, but I knew my parents too. And yet, I knew in my heart that it was either now or never. I had to be the bad boy in the family. I had to be the guy who married for love – this would mean that I’d spend the rest of my life trying to balance things – trying to be Sumit of Sumit Sambhal Lega. And I knew that I’d suck at it. Yet, I had to do it, because I knew that it was my only chance.
My first love still remains a secret treasure buried in my heart.
My second transformed me into a man full of regret.
My third, final, and forever love has built me a home in which I hope to live happily until the day I die.
The Uncertainty has ended.
And now the translations:
Love-shove: In Punjabi, adding “sh” after removing the first letter of a word, trivializes it.
Meri Happy Kahani: My Happy Story
Nain-mattakka: Something that mom picked up from one of her friends. It translates to exchanging glances or flirting.