Bad Women

There she was again, wearing her beautiful wedding dress. Inside the same church with similar sounding divine blah blah, but the people present there, were quieter than before and so was she. The red roses that decked the aisle on her wedding day had long been faded away and so had her gorgeous blush that used to rush down her cheeks. Jemini had been married for 3 long years when one day she blessed herself free from the curse of life. On the front row I saw her son, too little to understand death and mourn it, sitting on his father’s lap. Every voice in that church corridor had its own reason for Jemini’s suicide. Her familial dissatisfaction was the explanation she left us with. Though the reason seemed not so believable to most but they zipped their thoughts behind their gloomy faces.

“She had a fine family, a good husband and a baby boy… what more did she want?”.

They were right. Marriage was Jemini’s own decision and motherhood came to her as just another way to live this long life with a wrong decision. She could not trick life with her seemingly happy choices. In the last few years I seldom met her, twice on her anniversaries and twice on her son’s birthday. She had convincingly masked all the fatal uncertainties and doubts behind those smiles occasionally put up with the tray of drinks and cakes. Her happy silence for all these years is what left us all with questions that only she could answer.

All endings do not assure a pleasing fiction. Marriage and motherhood is the socially recognized aspired end for women. When this domesticity is their own decision it becomes hard to retrace the steps coz it becomes unwomanly to leave and abandon. She may at times not love her husband who was once the love of her life but motherhood becomes the unbreakable shackle for life. Must it not be acceptable for a woman to “not love”.

They said it was an escape from responsibility. Some years back, when Jemini took charge of her life and chose to marry a man of her choice, it then became responsibility of the man to save her from tragic ends like this. Responsibilities do not strengthen a relationships, love does. Sitting all day at home and parenting a child… some say it inevitably brings a smile on a woman’s face. I am not quite sure about that. Questioning the happy-motherhood poster image is not the way of the world.

“Only bad women exercise their freewill to not love”… the world screams at our sex.

Disha Kapkoti