….Happy Mother’s Day….
She was still in the comfort of her womb, oblivious to the outside world as yet.
She didn’t know what the whole hue and cry was all about.
Her family was asking the Doctor if it was a girl or a boy, the Doctor was vehemently refusing the divulge the details. They wanted a Boy.
The last foetus had been aborted just because it was a girl, the doctor knew her mother won’t be able to go through it again.
A few months later she was born. There was no cheering no distribution of sweets. It was almost as if the entire neighborhood was mourning her birth.
She never went to school as she grew up, her Father always avoided her and she stuck to her Mother’s pallu watching her toil at menial jobs in their house and others.
She learnt what she could, tried to read what she could, played when no one was around and hid in a corner when everyone was home.
She grew up and took up her Mother’s legacy, the washing of clothes and cleaning of utensils. Making enough money to pay for her Father’s drinking and her Mother’s funeral.
She got older learning that she was a curse on her Family and every misfortune that their family went through was not because of her Father’s lack of effort but because she was born as a girl and not as a boy.
She avoided her Father everytime he got home, because he had tried to strangle her once when he was drunk. She didn’t want to die….
She avoided the lecherous stares of the Men in her neighbourhood because she felt they would tear her apart with their eyes the moment they got their hands on her. She didn’t want to get raped…….
She did not make any friends and she did not socialise. She didn’t want someone to take advantage of her vulnerability……
Then she got married. She got married to the first person who could assure her Father enough supply of the Desi hooch which was a payment for her virginity.
She complied. She had no choice. She didn’t want to go against her Father’s wishes and tell him about the guy she secretly liked. She killed her wishes so that she wouldn’t be killed for her family’s honour……
She continued lying there under her husband, no matter how tired she was, night after night as her husband extracted every penny’s worth from her, which he had spent on her Father, even long after her Father died. Died cursing her for one last time. “Meri Zindagi ki sabse badi pannauti”
She bore her husband enough children to keep him happy and herself occupied.
She took care of her children, gave them the best that she could afford, till she could afford and stood by them only as a Mother can.
She made sure her children would never have to go through what she did.
She finally “made it” as a “Mother”
Happy Mothers Day……
To all those women who made it.
……And to all those women who could never make it.
….Could never make it because they were killed before their birth, killed after their birth when found they were a girl, beaten to death by their family, raped and murdered by their neighbors, killed because the society thought they were the biggest “pannauti” of their life.
Happy Mothers Day to all of them. For they would have also made fine Mothers ….. Had we, the society, been kind enough to let them survive.
Disclaimer: Wishing Women on one day for being a Mother might make us feel good for that one day of the year, but acting in a manner which makes them proud to be a Mother, a Woman, would make them feel good for their whole life.