Punished for life

She was married at an age when;

She thought females in saree were her aunt,

When aam-panna was everything she wants.

When getting 2paise as reward was the moment of proud

And things were cheerful and loud.

Getting a hand-woven doll was her greatest desire

She was a cute cuddly liar.

She was married when she didn’t even know what marriage is, and
That loneliness is going to turn out to be her greatest bliss.

She was married at thirteen, to a guy probably 10 years elder to her. Why?
Because her father thought it was once in a lifetime opportunity to get a well-settled guy like him, as  groom and that too at a very low cost.

A farmer and father of 5 kids  wasn’t able to arrange that low-cost wedding properly hence was punished. He was not allowed to meet his daughter ever. But to his relief, his daughter was accepted in the boy’s family. Such relief.

An immature age and hurried circumstance left her clueless about her surroundings. All she can make out was “she is going to a new home, new family but without her mother. She won’t  accompany her there like she used to do while going to school. Will she be allowed to go to school there, she asked her mum, in a low voice. Her mum looked at her, sobbed fat tears and bade her goodbye.

The new home, new family rather than welcoming her were mourning over the money they can’t get. Mourning because they thought that the bride will be bedecked in gold, mourning because they thought they got a golden hen. Mourning. Disappointed.
Few even considered remarriage of the groom. But groom answered them with a plain “NO”
Hence they had to accept her in the family.

As time passed by she got settled there, she adorned every relation, she made everyone hers. She became the part of the family.
It took time but she stopped being scared of her husband, she learned that he owns her, she accepted that a “husband-wife” relationship is meant to be that way only. Her will doesn’t exists.

Two years later she gave birth to a stillborn and doctors declared she can never be a mother again.

Mere bhaiya aaye hain (My Brother has come)

Sixth sense or the sub-conscious mind whatever you say,she suddenly woke up from her peaceful sleep to face the bitter reality. He was lying next to her and before she could react he closed her mouth. She is probably 9 or 10 years old , too young to understand what was going on and He, her cousin, in his late teens, too young to be that cruel.

He started moving his hand all over her body, touching her everywhere, making her cerebral cells register lust, define greed in new terms.She turned pale and terror got imprinted in her eyes. She shivered. Her brain sending cold chills down her spine. Her mind jammed with all sort of questions popping up. She actually couldn’t understand “how to respond” “how to defend” “how to protect herself”, at her tender age she was too naive to realize that she need to protect herself.

A loud bang outside made him conscious and she was spared that night. For a few minutes, she lied there, all blank wondering what happened what was real or just a weird nightmare. But soon she realized even her nightmares are not this cruel. He has came to stay with her family during his winter vacations. She has met him for the first time in her knowledge and was very happy to have a BROTHER. There was no one in her society who wasn’t told “Mere bhaiya aaye hain” (My brother has come). Though being a shy kid, she didn’t started interacting with him.

She was JUST A KID. Never had heard or seen anything like this. Her brain had no clue what to do in such situations. It explored even the remote corners but nothing useful it came up with. She lied there STILL, figuring out answers to her questions, “What was that?” “Why bhaiya touching me?” ” Why it felt so gross?” “Why am I feeling this awkward” “What am I supposed to do now” “Should I tell mom?” “What would I tell her??..” All the why’s and whats kept revolving in her mind. She kept feeling disgusting but couldn’t make up the courage to talk about this to her mom. At last She decided that she’ll stay away from BHAIYA, no interactions, nothing at all.
After that night she kept herself clinged to her mother. Not leaving her side even for a moment. But that night kept haunting her. She couldn’t actually sleep after that.

One day when She came back home after school, she found Mom was not at home. She was terror struck. Not making a sound she headed back thinking she would stay at neighbor’s place till her mother comes back. Suddenly, he held her hand. She busted out crying. He held her hand more firmly and locked the door. She tried all possible means, she cried loud, screamed at the top of her voice, kicked him with legs, pleaded him to leave her alone..but it didn’t affected him. “Bhaiya, meko janna hai” (I need to leave, brother) didn’t wrenched his heart. The home that was once filled with her sweet squeals, was now filled with her painful screams.