Friday, December 30, 2016

Surname Syndromes

Surnames to Indians are attached before a life. At times, before the sexual intercourse of couple. It wouldn't be an understatement to say surname is born first and then the baby. I am sure you had chanced upon inquisitive and poky aunties during weddings, wishing bride and groom, and gleefully blessing them to deliver lil Sharma, Sinha or Gupta by their first anniversary. That important is your surname and half of your identity is already hard coded much before you are born and sadly it's cannot be erased.

Then you grew up to be admitted in school   where you are upgraded to a sensible official name from vacuous embarrassing pet names Lolo, Piku, Gappu or Chikku. Since then, you are called by your first name followed by surname or vice-a-versa. Often surnames turn out to be unique identity when in a group there are more than one individual with the same first name. For example, two of my girl friends in college shared the same first name "Tanisha". This created lot of fuss initially. However, their distinct surnames saved us from creating perplexing situation. To obviate confusion, we started calling one of them as "Tanisha" (Tanisha Chopra) and other as "TSharma" (Tanisha Sharma).

Surnames remain rooted to ur name and becomes an integral part of your upbringing. It has got the ability to bestow you with either esteem or disrespect by exposing your caste, sub caste and at times your geographical roots. Gradually, you either start loving your surname or dislike it intensely. Nevertheless, you are given no choice but to stay and live with it. You make name and fame with the same name. Needless to say a small recognition to huge accolades and laurels are obviously with this name that defined you since your birth. People might have also gone a step ahead to frame the cherished certificates with your birth name to be hanged in their beautiful living rooms.

All seems well for Indian girls until they decide to get married. While you are still trying to cope up with the new family and novel surroundings, the so called Sasuraal post marriage you are renamed for another part of life. A single wedding day is adept to alter your life and identity. With unleashing new responsibilities, putting up your best to perform duties of a doting wife to sansaakaari bahu, sadly you are pushed to build your identity with your new surname. All that has been built over the years is scrapped in a single day and you have to start it all over again. Unfortunately, in some communities even the first name is changed due to ridiculous superstitious beliefs. Does that mean that you were nothing before the wedding and are being asked to forget some X years of your life that defined you?

Ironically, you are asked to bury your birth name after marriage but you will be accused of your bringing, for unsuccessful attempts at cooking and cleaning. Shouldn't it be this way... if you are being asked to incarnate your life with an unacquainted surname and name, shouldn't you be schooled to suite the new environment. Not so late, you are made to run into the Govt offices, Banks and registrar offices for changing your names and this is a most embarrassing and idiotic thing ever happening. Funnily, it will be you who would be erasing your own name and rewriting it with some awkward smile. If you an independent women with credits in your kitty for outstanding accomplishments and renowned in the society, then you are sure to be unpalatable about the way things would happen.

I fail to understand the harm in retaining the birth name, the name which I are associated and grew up with. Is this supposed to be bad omen if it remain the way it sans losing its charm and appeal. Does changing brides name add more aura into the family washing the family’s impurities? Or alter my destiny. If this kind of activity can transform my destiny, then I vow to make this happen repeatedly throughout the life. Divorcing name and surname is like extricating a milking cow and calf. Such a sadistic pleasure is brutal and inhuman. Similarly, why shouldn't my maternal surname which stood by me in abyss and peaks stay with me till my death bed. Like my body part, a confidence that I rely upon, an honor that I relish, a pot of all experiences and adventures. My surname is like my soul friend who knows all my dirty secrets and I long for it to be part of my journey throughout.

Monday, December 26, 2016

Letter to The Bride

The Bride to be

It is just a week for our wedding and there is much to tell you before the D-Day. Email, telephone, Chat..etc would have been a perfect medium of communication in this new age but I choose the conventional letter because I didn’t want my message to fade away in the multiple chats or emails. Our two meetings wouldn’t have given a clear picture of our individual dreams, goals, likes and dislikes. I am sure you must be feeling the same too. Seldom people get enough time to interact with their future partners in case of arranged marriages. Unfortunately, we are not those lucky ones.

I never believed in love at first sight and looked at it as a silly irrational explanation given by extremely desperate humans to defend themselves against attraction. Believe me, the moment I saw your eyes, I was lost in trance and I just knew you are the one who going to live (You shall be enduring me. Pun intended.) with me for years to come. Honey, it is very important that you know what I feel about this relationship.

I attribute to whatever I am today to my dearest parents who had gone beyond their boundaries to make my dreams come true. My mother, a great inspiration for me sacrificed her booming carrier to look after my studies. She is an epitome of love. And Dad worked in extra shifts to pay my coaching fees. I am ever indebted to them and will be happier if you treat and respect them well. I am confident that they will soon become your parents and not parents-in-law. Your aura will charm up the smiles of my family. This will no more be my family but will be our family. Similar will be the case with your family too. You are an independent women with a flourishing carrier planned flawlessly. I have been an admirer of such women and strongly believe in equanimity. I will leave it up to you to decide whether to work or take a break from your job. Whatever is your decision, I will stand by you all the times.

It is immaterial we discuss about past relationships and I wish it to lay buried deep underground and never rise again. There might be several thoughts flowing in your mind, fears about me or my family. This is such a common thing every girl faces. You might be skeptical about me, my family’s values, love and kindness. Or the fear of mingling with my mother, having a pleasant conversation with my dad and lay fearlessly next to me. Honestly, I am also going thorough similar kind of fears. Woman, I do know you will be leaving your family, relationships, your favorite toys and of course a part of your name to move into our lives. I know these things mean a lot to you but do not worry and I wouldn’t want you to leave all these things at your home like other brides. I urge you to accept new things, relationships and values along with your existing ones. Please bring in your aura, charisma, confidence that you have built up all these years. You can retain your surname too. My house will always be vacant if you ever wish to carry your childhood memories or an old book shelf. Succinctly, I just want you to walk into our lives as you and relinquishing nothing.

I am looking for a partner in you and not a wife who would serve me a cup of coffee or iron my clothes. I want a wife who would stand by me in my ups and downs. An intelligent and empathetic lady who would advise me in my business, counter my decisions and light up my mind with varied perspectives, debate with me on economics and politics, teach me, have a sport with me and romance with me till my last breath. I will be grateful and delighted if you come up to me and tell me things that hurt you or my annoying habits that disturb you from day one. This will help us construct a concrete relationship without bubbles. Honey, from the bottom of my heart I welcome you to bring vivid hues in our lives like a rainbow in the clear sky after a rainfall. On the D-day just do not walk with your ravishing clothes, exquisite accessories and spotless makeover. Walk with your scintillating eyes spreading warmth, beautiful smile dispersing happiness, generous innocence unfolding melancholy and above all with your composed and serene heart. I will be waiting and looking for a beautiful soul under that ravishing veil and a promise to stay along holding my hand forever and ever.

The Groom to be

This article was selected as a "winning blog" as part of new year contest conducted by Brides Essentials.