Merry Christmas

Posted: December 30, 2014
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Relationships aren’t easy, especially when they end. Here’s a moment of moving on, captured beautifully.

One of the top 5 entries for December’s Muse of the Month writing theme, with the cue “It’s astonishing how we comment on change, as if change is something remarkable. On the contrary, not to change is unnatural, against nature.”  from Shashi Deshpande’s That Long Silence.

Dec 2014She opened her eyes. It was foggy and dreary outside, just as winter days are, in Delhi. She blinked and looked at her mobile next to her on the bed. It was 10 AM.

“Sh*t, I overslept,” she thought. But she didn’t really want to get out of the warm blankets. The left side of her bed was empty as usual, as it has been for the last few days. She blinked again and stared at the ceiling, the murky thoughts and arguments with him came back to her hazy mind. It’s been exactly a year since they started their relationship; a modern-day fairy tale, that is what she remarked to her friends.

But this was contemporary, a post-postmodern world and fairy tales do not exist. Not even in children’s books anymore. They were deconstructed a long time back.

She thought of the same day last year, how it began with a brunch in one of Delhi’s toniest places and where he proposed to her. That day was Christmas, and yet today it is not. The government has decided to mark it as Good Governance Day. Christmas was no longer about Santa Claus, Louis Armstrong’s songs, plum cakes, and Jingle Bells.

It is now a day of mourning, of insidious subversion.

She sighed, and her thoughts meandered to ten years back when she was a strappy, spunky 20 year old. Her first break-up, she remembered then, was also on Christmas Day.

“It’s astonishing how we comment on change, as if change is something remarkable. On the contrary, not to change is unnatural, against nature” – she remembered Shashi Deshpande’s words from one her favourite novels, That Long Silence.

She blinked away that lonely tear threatening to make its way out of her big, lonely eyes. She sat up.

“Change – yes, that is what I will embrace,” she said to herself. She threw her blankets, and went to her balcony. And within that foggy day, with the cold breeze blowing making her nose ruddy, she found a little bit of herself that she had lost. And she smiled; to herself, to the world.

“Merry Christmas,” she softly let out her wish to the universe.

Pic credit: Image of Christmas via Shutterstock.

Shaheen Ahmed is pursuing an M.Phil at Jawaharlal Nehru University from the School of Arts and Aesthetics. She is an art practitioner dabbling in video art, performance, and photography. She is also an avid writer and a flaneuse.

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