Tuesday, October 20, 2015

The Endless Night

“The roses and lilacs bloomed
So were her dreams and aspirations
But the storm came, without warning
And with that came her ending”

We all have aspirations and dreams that we want to build and nurture. What if our dreams were shattered? Not by our own actions but by the external factors. The dreams that grew with us, the wishful thoughts that swirled around us each moment and the happiness that has been derived out of it. How can one do this to my friend and Junior? How can one be inhuman towards the feelings of others? These were my first reaction when I read what happened to my 24 year old friend and Junior in my Alma matter. I couldn’t sleep that day. I tossed and turned and could not believe in the story that glared on the walls of Facebook. I was finding lies in the whole matter of truth as I know that girl personally. “I wanted to do Ph.D.”, “I love pets, and I find my soul in their happiness. Look at these pictures. These were taken in my place which houses two dogs and one kitten”, said she in a cheerful manner. She sounded in a blissful state when she talked about her parents. We all girls found comfort in our talks during those busy hours spent in hostel and college doing our assignments. Who would have thought that such would be her destiny after 2 long years?

Sapna (name changed) hailed from a beautiful place. A place which is known as Abode of Shiva. Dehradun. She was married right away after her MBA to an upper middle class Punjabi family. That was against her wish as she wanted to go abroad and do Ph.D. as I already mentioned above. She fought with her parents but parental units did not pay any heed to her wishes and desires. And they arranged for a royal big fat wedding that calls for gem encrusted ostentatious dresses for bride and groom and elaborate baraat and where everything screams money and class. These type of weddings often serve as a litmus test showing where they stand in the societal class. Wedding was done. Till that time Sapna was half way convinced with her situation and got adjusted to the spotlight that the day put on her. The sun was half way close to the horizon. Literally that was the situation with Sapna but her appetite for quest for happiness in the new alien world grew extremely at an alarming rate as the hors d’oeuvres came in the form of her husband’s showy love for her. It was all glitter and gold for 4 months. New outfits, showering attention, exotic vacations and expensive gifts. She was in the gilded throne for that period. But the truth always peeps out too soon.

 The husband who poured her love and care did not get impressed with her wish to study further. Her dreams were slowly reaching the grave. Yet she did not give up. She took this matter to her in laws but they too turned a deaf ear to her feelings. They, including her husband, shut her out from the external world and asked her to be a royal Khandaani bahu who breathed gold, walked silk and applied paint. It was just 4 months into the relationship of heart but the heart never came into consideration. The heart which was cornered and lay drooping its eyes in front of the family honor and silly obsolete mindset was slowly losing its equilibrium. And that black day came when the news flashed that Sapna was no more. I got up, washed my face, thinking that I had a nightmare. She was ruthlessly murdered by her in-laws because she couldn’t draw more money. She had the same fate as sone ki chidiya. The dowry was not enough. But what about the promises? Those sacrifices which she made. She was the only child of her parents. They were shattered, cheated and everything came like a sucker punch.

This was the fate of my friend Sapna. The dreams and wishes to study, do something out of her career, walk ahead in life, know more things, write a book, do research and many such things were gone with her. The sun was fully set and ahead lay an endless night. The dark shadows that lurked in her life in the form of marriage and stupid customs and traditional beliefs never got her anything. And our gender stereotype worshippers will not point their fingers to the money eating parasites but would raise questions to Sapna.

What if Sapna was allowed to study further? What if she did not follow the stereotype? Would she have faced ill fate? Truth be told, the beliefs are laid down by us. The rules are drafted by us. This over generalization or defining roles for the genders, most of the times, makes life difficult for the fairer sex. Till the time of early Vedic period, women were treated with great respect and had everything in favor of them. But the later Vedic period saw no comfort for women and that era defined some ill rules and structure for women which we are still following them. They are treated among the lower echelons of the world.

Also gender stereotypes would have a negative connotations and would corrupt the minds of younger generations. This societal norms or dictating patterns that a certain gender should follow, has ruined by friend’s life. The clans would patronize the stereotypes till women claim rights for themselves. So there should be a change in how we see men and women. The roles should not define them but they should work together to give the roles a new meaning. So let us start a new thought, a new pattern where Mars and Venus together blends and create a better place to live in. 

1 comment:

  1. sadly there are so many Sapnas who are caged in golden cages. i hate it when a girl's own parents treat her as a load that must be transferred to another family as soon as possible. nice post.