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A quick tale 9

Everything about her had had to change after marriage. Her routine (she had to be up at 5.30), what she wore (no more jeans), hairstyle (“Oil your hair, plait them and wear flowers. You’re married now”, reminded the mother-in-law) and even what she saw on TV. The other day she innocently remarked how good-looking Aamir Khan was and it was met with a stern rebuke from the in-laws and a snide remark from the husband.

She clung to the one thing familiar – her name. She refused to add her husband’s name to her own. Everyone else seemed happy doing it but for her it meant something final. Which is why she wept when she received a birthday card from her mother. It had her name tagged to her husband’s. It was like looking at a scarred face in the mirror and not recognising it as one’s own.


Amrita said…
I am mentioning this again (since I have already left a comment on your quick tale 6), is there some special feeling attached to married women who are unhappy?
AF said…
Marriage changes everything, toooooooooooooooooo many compromises and we can never be our own self again.

Ansh said…
I totally commend 'Her' decision not to add her husband's name to hers...I can find some justicifation to other changes a woman undergoes after marriage...but why tag you hubby's name to yours...I still continue to wonder? many of my cousins have done that...i feel such women do not have a individuality!
I would prefer to have my dad's name after mine coz what I was, am or will be is because of him and its a way of showing my appreciation!
Thangachee said…
Kalyanamaana Apdidaammaa..ponngaldaan ADJUST PANNIKANUM
(After you are married.. You gotta ADJUST!!!! a girl)

Dei, poi kaathadi ududa!
(Go fly a kite, man!)

That's why I have neither my dad's name nor my husband's. Its my native place that is tagging along.
ammani said…
Good observation, Amrita. You're right, women trapped by marriage does seem to be a recurring theme in my stories though the first few were not. Am I one of those? Far, far from it.
yeah very true........... I donno how I am going to be ... But I think we should never give up. Never Never Never giveup. there will be a day when In-Law will go with her to see the same Aamir khan Movie. It is just a matter of time and effort and willingness to fight till we succeed... What do u say????
Anonymous said…
Wow Ammani, amazing story again. Looking forward to more....
PVS said…
That one was a nice one Ammani. Married life is full of compromises on the girls side
mischief editor said…
for the first time i could see 'childlike' in your writing...

sometimes, it helps...
Maverick said…
I can very well see from these quick tales that it is written by or written about a woman involved in a failed marriage.

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Married for 31 years, 2 months and 17 days
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Three meals a day,
At least two dishes cooked, each meal-time
One snack for every Sunday
Big basket of clothes ironed every Tuesday
Average 18 items of clothing washed per day
Three children
1 miscarriage
One mother-in-law suffered
900 sq metre of floor space mopped, once a day
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3 chicken poxes, 2 measles, 2 fractures, 8 diarrhoeas, depression, conjunctivitis every summer, 1 tonsilitis and countless common colds and flues
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Sex tolerated every 2nd week
Religious rituals everyone of them, carried out
Not one of them, believed in
Lived 52 years and some
Died exhausted

Overheard, “At least she had the satisfaction of having lived for her family”

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Found this in yesterday's paper. Again, I wish I'd written it.


Now and Then

"Now that I'm fifty-seven",
My mother used to say,
"Why should I waste a minute?
Why should I waste a day

Doing the things I ought to
Simply because I should?
Now that I'm fifty-seven
I'm done with that for good."

But now and then I'd catch her
Trapped in some thankless chore
Just as she might have been at
Fifty-three or fifty-four

And I would say to her
(And I have to bite my tongue)
That if you mean to learn a skill
It's well worth starting young

And so, to make sure I'm in time
For fifty, I've begun
To do exactly as I please
Now that I'm thirty-one.

-Sophie Hannah

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