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A young girl asks her future 'Mr.Right' to recognise her as a modern Indian woman and accept her right to an independent life
This note to you is all about some demands and requests that have come from many hopes, expectations and experiences; this letter is for you, so that you don’t get surprised by my expectations later in life, and so that you remind me of when I’m neglecting my own rules, because this note is for both you and me, for the ‘us’ to work without wearing out.
I know everything may seem just perfect in the initial stages of love. I may look like the most beautiful thing to us, the most perfect, and ideal. But time is not so kind for we may have to gradually witness terrible shades of each other revealed, those ugly truths that may emerge from the inside and outside. Tough situations may remove the illusion of love, but I hope you’ll still accept me. These tests will run every day for us; right from waking with messed up hair and groggy eyes in the morning, which is not a most aesthetically pleasing sight- which is well when we may come to realize the harsh truth, even ‘the right one’ can be imperfect.
There are some things I’d like to let you know. I feel it’s important to reinforce this because there will be so many stones to tumble upon in the way of our ‘perfect’ relationship.
I’m a modern woman.
The first thing is that I will not change who I am, not for you or anyone. Only after loving myself enough will I have the strength to love you, because I believe dignity is most important. I am also an independent woman. This, you may be unfamiliar with, as many are in sexist India (which is sluggishly but definitely trying to change), but you must get used to it. I will respect you as an individual, and I hope that’d be reciprocated. We do not own each other; we are complimentary, yet free.
I don’t follow what others do. There could be a thousand ‘inescapable’ trends, but you’ll find me fight many of them. I don’t care what path the others may choose, but I’ll take that one which will suit me best, a way that’s may be different from yours. But I ask that you hold my hand to support me even as we experience our the different adventures that come along our own way, and not try to push me over the stumbling blocks or hope that I’d never dare venture individually, myself. I wish that you will care for me and protect me, and also accept when I may do the same to you.
We belong to the same species- Homo sapiens – which means that you are in no way superior; neither am I. I expect that you take equal responsibility in every stage of our life together- housework, child upbringing, because these and a thousand other Indian misconceptions are not equal to ‘woman-work’; because actually, they are ‘human-work’.
I may seem tough but I have my fragile points, and hazy times, just as you. I hope our arms will be open to comfort one another when we’re low.
We may get frustrated a thousand times. The voyage of love does not come easy. There may be frustrating times when the relationship feels unbearable, broken, times when love turns to hatred and anger, when the future looks bleak and dark, but know that, with optimism, courage, trust, and the power of both of us, we’ll somehow manage to light a candle. Please don’t ever lose hope or faith in me. True love, I know will never die. Please remind me when I forget, that silly fights, vague outsiders, stupid situations, none of these, nothing, is worth our precious bond.
I hope you’ll see right through all my defenses and understand me. I hope you’ll confide in me, and listen to me when I’m low. I hope you will be not just a lover to me, but a best-friend, a protective father, and a complimenting brother.
Most of all, I want you to recognize me as a unique personality with flaws and pluses, and love me for just that.
The modern Indian woman
Hi! I'm an often overly-excited, frequently fun-loving, and sometimes deeply-sunk-in-thoughts student of life. Earth and all the stuff in it -especially humans- has always awed me and I love read more...
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I huffed, puffed and panted up the hill, taking many rest breaks along the way. My calf muscles pained, my heart protested, and my breathing became heavy at one stage.
“Let’s turn back,” my husband remarked. We stood at the foot of Shravanbelagola – one of the most revered Jain pilgrimage centres. “We will not climb the hill,” he continued.
My husband and I were vacationing in Karnataka. It was the month of May, and even at the early hour of 8 am in the morning, the sun scorched our backs. After visiting Bangalore and Mysore, we had made a planned stop at this holy site in the Southern part of the state en route to Hosur. Even while planning our vacation, my husband was very excited at the prospect of visiting this place and the 18 m high statue of Lord Gometeshwara, considered one of the world’s tallest free-standing monolithic statues.
What we hadn’t bargained for was there would be 1001 granite steps that needed to be climbed to have a close-up view of this colossal magic three thousand feet above sea level on a hilltop. It would be an understatement to term it as an arduous climb.
She was sure she was dying of cancer the first time her periods came. Why did her mother not explain anything? Why did no one say anything?
Sneha still remembers the time when she had her first period.
She was returning home from school in a cycle-rickshaw in which four girls used to commute to school. When she found something sticky on the place where she was sitting, she wanted to hide it, but she would be the first girl to get down and others were bound to notice it. She was a nervous wreck.
As expected, everyone had a hearty laugh seeing her condition. She wondered what the rickshaw-wallah thought of her. Running towards her home, she told her mother about it. And then, she saw. There was blood all over. Was she suffering from some sickness? Cancer? Her maternal uncle had died of blood cancer!
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