Tag Archives: marriage

Wrenched anniversary

“It’s our anniversary,” she says so softly over the phone that I can barely hear her.

“That’s amazing! Are you gonna celebrate?” I ask trying to sound gleeful even though it’s 4 am in the morning, and I’m sleepy.

She doesn’t say anything and all I hear is her uneven breathing. “I’ve wasted eighteen years of my life.” There’s remorse in her voice, the kind you get when someone close to you passes away. She’s been married for eighteen years. Time passes by so fast when you’re not the one suffering.

“Huh.” I try to act oblivious even though I know what she’s talking about. She’s never mentioned it to me, but I’ve eased dropped enough to figure out things that I’m not supposed to know.

“Nothing child,” she steers away from the conversation and asks me about college, and when I’m getting married. I laugh it off and brush the conversation to something more convenient, like the weather. We can talk about things that are unimportant for hours, but when it comes to important things, we either have no words or we lose our voices.

Why is it so hard to say what’s on my mind? I want to press her, ask her for the details but I’m terrified of her answer. Sometimes the words I want to spit out are lingering on the tip of my tongue but no matter how hard I try I can’t seem to say them. It’s like they’re caged behind these metal bars that won’t let my words pass.

I know her because I love her like a second mother, but I haven’t exactly been the perfect daughter. I know the torture she’s been through and it gets me angry every time I hear her hopeless voice. I wish I could do more for her then just listen. But how can I help someone else win their war when I’m losing my own battles.

She seems perfect from the outside. We all do, but no one knows what’s happening behind closed doors. Some smiles are etched with knives of pain. Sometimes devils don’t wear horns, they come to you wearing divine wings. And the worst part is that these devils don’t even know they’re devils because they’re hiding beneath culture, sex, ego and power.

What I don’t get is why we become so afraid to speak? Maybe because we’re afraid no one will listen or understand. Maybe we’re afraid of the gossip. Maybe it’s easier to hide beneath veils then to be exposed.

I don’t know why she stayed. She says it’s because of the culture we grew up in and because she had children and there was no way she could fend for herself in a world where divorced women are considered taboo.

I remember hearing once that her husband beat her up because she left the house without covering her face. I do blame the husband but also the mentality he grew up in and sadly we’re still living in that same time frame.

People around me still have that mindset and no matter how loud I scream or speak, my voice falls on deaf ears. People think it’s better to endure abuse than to unveil that curtain. I don’t blame them because I am not in that position and I have no idea what they’re going through. But not speaking up ruin’s future generations. It creates abusers and victims. I’ve seen way too many women around me suffer in silence and their silence screams in my ears.

She- whose name I can’t mention is still in that position. Her children are a mess and it breaks my heart every time I talk to her or see her. I wish I could do more for her and other women like her.

Photo by Northwoods Murphy from Pexels

Marriage…

I attended a wedding last weekend. It was cool- they had food. They also had music so loud that I was afraid my ears would pop. They kinda did.

The bride was draped in her beautiful God-knows-how-much-dress and the groom was dressed in a tux. They looked cute together- I think. I wasn’t wearing my glasses. I would’ve paid more attention to my surroundings, but my heels were killing me or maybe I was killing them: either way it was terrifying.

I’m not the type of girl who likes to dress up, sit still and look pretty. I’m more of a comfortable, laid back, jumping-off-a-cliff type of a girl. I don’t know how to look elegant or sway people with my beautifully-unnoticeable lashes, but I do know how to build forts with pillows. I don’t know how to put make-up on, but I do know how to stuff crackers in my mouth without swallowing them.

The point I’m trying to make is that after attending the wedding I realized something important. I realized how socially awkward of a person I am. The fake smiles, the giggles, the anxiety, the wanting to run-away was all bubbling inside of me. I was consciously playing with my fingers and my dupatta and praying no one would notice me, but everyone did. I was self-conscious the whole time, wondering if people saw what I see in the mirror every day.

Being the bride is nerve-wrenching, not only because all the eyes are on you but because there is so much expected of you after the marriage ceremony. Be a good daughter at first, then be a good daughter-in-law. Good wife. Good mother. It’s hard to keep up with everything. And if anything goes wrong all the blame is thrown on the girl- as if the boy’s infidelity is her fault too.

I’m not saying marriage is captivation; sometimes, for some people, it can be liberation as well. I have a friend whose parents refused to let her go for a study abroad program because she was a girl, but now that she’s married she’s all over the place – enjoying the world by herself and sometimes with her husband. I know parents want to protect their daughters, but by doing so not only are they hurting them, but they’re pushing them away from themselves. In this, overprotection, they’re breaking beautiful souls. Sometimes it’s not even about protection, it’s about ‘what people will say.’ And let me tell you people don’t give a damn. They have their own issues to deal with, their own battles to fight. And if you do have the time to listen to what other people have to say, then you my friend, need a new hobby.

“Do this after your married.” I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve heard this phrase. I want to travel – do it after your married and when your married – you should’ve done this before you were married.

I want to climb Mount Everest – do it after you’re married. I want to start a YouTube channel – do it after you’re married. I want to die – do it after you’re married. I want to conquer Bulgaria – do it after you’re married. Please explain this logic to me!

I have another friend of mine, who was carefree but now she’s confined to her house by her husband. She loves him a lot, and he loves her too, but if love could solve all the problems in this world then we wouldn’t have problems. Too much love is an obsession. It’s a problem in itself.

Life is a compromise and so is marriage. Sometimes you’ll have to bow, and sometimes you’ll have to rise- regardless of gender. Sometimes you’ll have to give up, and sometimes you’ll have to fight. You can’t choose your life or what life throws at you, but you can choose how you wish to react to it. Choose your battles wisely, or life will choose them for you. I wish I could say the same thing for life-partners but in this choosing process the heart screws us over.

Photo by Qazi Ikram Ul Haq from PexelsCopy