The Day I Learnt – It’s Ok

Written By

Hampi Chakrabarti

The day I learnt its ok-01 Loading

It was not the most perfect of mornings. After waking up an hour later than usual and having to skip my daily yoga routine because of it, I had somehow managed to close my eyes and still my body in pursuit of the peaceful state of meditation. Five minutes into it and a screaming three-year-old neighbour, the ardent Ganpati devotees of the colony who believe in thundering music as the pinnacle of worship, my mother who was furious at her husband for being ignorant of the cardinal truth that you are supposed to buy pumpkin with pui saag for making pui saag er chochhori, all rallied forces against me. I gave up. My mind wandered to the boyfriend sitting 536 kms away. Even our worst fights seemed better than this moment. Fights always held the promise of making-up. I picked up the phone and posed with pouty lips and drooping eyes (trying to look as Angelina Jolie-esque as I could). The morning-gone-wrong face severely lacked oomph. I gave another shot this time complete with a pulled down t-shirt neck and squeezed shoulders to facilitate a show of cleavage. Ah! Perfect. I attached a love-filled good-morning message and sent it on its way, hoping at least his morning would be better.

An hour later I again picked up the phone to a find a horrified friend’s message, “Check what you have done!”

I checked. I had posted the message to my boyfriend (all embellished with a dozen kissing emojis, flirty nicknames, seductress face AND – cleavage!) to one of my Whatsapp groups.

OHH SHIT!

I was finally wide awake two hours after leaving bed. Doomsday had struck and I was its first target on planet Earth! All reality, the cosmos, the birds, the rivers, my breath and senses, all halted with a jerk. My first thought was to dunk my head and disappear from the face of the earth. However, for want of a substantial place to dunk my head, I had no option but to keep staring at the damned phone screen. Thought number two was to exit the Whatsapp group and pretend that I had indeed disappeared from the face of the earth. No way! Ego stood in the way.

I took a deep breath. Thought number three stared me right in the face and said, “Face it. Own it”.

“You are stupid,” I retaliated. “You have no idea that a good girl from a good family is not supposed to be seen in public with a boy. Leave alone have private words and a relationship with him (and emojis!). You have no idea that my reputation, my parent’s reputation, my grandparent’s reputation, my choti mami ke phuphaji ke bade bhai ki beti’s reputation depends on it. You have no idea who might come to know what from whom and my higher education from the bigger university in the neighbouring state, living in a hostel will be held responsible for my cleavage! There are rules, fool. And a good girl has to live by the rules.” I could already see the giggling, gossiping lips dancing around me, drawing entertainment from my life.

Thought number three stared back harder and shot, “Who told you all this?”

I said, “Well – umm – I don’t remember exactly. Somebody must have told me because I have known all this ever since I can remember. I have lived most of my life guided by these guidelines (of course there were cheat days, cheat instances and cheat relationships).”

Thought number four bumped in. It pondered who really taught me all these things. I didn’t remember anyone spelling them out to me. It reasoned it was collective consciousness. I was answerable to this entire collective for my actions. My life had gone from one asphyxiated bend in the bumpy road to another trying to cover up for each time I faltered, each time I was caught red handed. After all, being a good girl was not just important, it was mandatory. Who would take my hand in marriage otherwise? Huh? (Er…the boyfriend 536 kms away – the recipient of the virtual kisses and the cleavage! Shh!).

I heralded in the fifth thought. Enough is enough. Breathe easy. Some days it’s ok to get dirty. (Wink, wink)

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Hampi Chakrabarti, is a Research Scholar trying to identify a pattern in the narrative of Indian Women's Autobiographies while totally clueless about her own life's narrative. Often found clicking pictures of the wonders around her. True blue spiritual seeker and beggar for divine intervention. Life mission to bring human beings closer to their truth and beauty. Allergic to Armchair hyper-intellectualism. Dreams of living in a tree house.

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