Love and Loss: the story of an Indian bride-to-be

What were they thinking? Our ancestors? Where they trying to make life interesting in some way? Why marriage? Were women folk involved in this decision? Why did our culture create such a turning point in a girl’s life where she has to undo all that she had learned throughout her childhood, teenage and adulthood, and start all over again?

I am sure they weren’t involved. For only women know the fear, the anxiety, the loss, the pain, the anguish of leaving a part of their soul behind while trying to adorn a new space, family and a surname. The loss of her paternal last name is a sheer reflection of the loss of one part of the self she is made of.

She has to begin anew, afresh.

Did you say she must be happy because she is marrying someone she loves? Well, for loving one, she has to leave behind many she had been loving since she opened her eyes to the world. What about that? The very bed she sleeps on, the very sun she is accustomed to, in her window? The very moon who bids her goodnight, every night? The very birds who wake her up every morn? What about them? Will they come to her new house? Will they shine and soothe and call her ever still?

Well, well, she would be blamed the same. She was a pompous bitch they will say. She is too learned to unlearn the world. She has her aspirations too high to live with the one she claimed to love. For it was she who had chosen him.

Well yes, she did, but not his house, his beings, his ways. Love is a passion enslaved by the heart. What could she have done? She but loved him and him truly.

But here comes the house between them. Come and live in here with me he says, leave everything you ever had behind. And mind you! Leave your last name too, for your owner is now anew, for you shall marry me and marriage is what it is.

For men need to die to reincarnate, a woman need only marry