Meera and Sushant got engaged. It was going to be an arrange marriage. Both of them and their family members were really excited for them. Everyone was waiting for the big day.
They got married. It was a joint family. Along with parents, Sushant had a younger sister and two younger brothers. And then there were his uncles and aunts and their kids, and of course, head of the family, his grand ma whom all of them called Ammaji.
Everyone in the house was happy and zealous to welcome the new member of the family. Meera was now Meera bhabhi most of the times. She was super occupied with everyone that it never striked her when did her day start and when did it end!
Sushant was happy too. All the family members loved Meera. She was perfect. For everyone.
One thing very weird was happening in the house. All the members of the family were good people. Yet Meera was wondering why is this happening. Everytime she passed from grand ma's room, she felt something is going on. Ammaji always kept her eyes on Meera wanting to sit and talk to her. Meera could see so much of pain in Ammaji's eyes, there was a cry for help, there was hunger for love, there was a thirst for belongingness, she was lonely like hell.. She wanted sympathy from everyone,she wanted to cry, she wanted mercy, she wanted a company for herself.
Meera couldn't get Ammaji out of her mind. She discussed about it with Sushant, but it didn't help. She had umpteen sleepless nights thinking why in the family no one comes close to Ammaji? Why doesn't anyone bothers about her? Why none of her grandchildren come to her to hear all the bed time stories? The only conversation made to her was about food she wanted to eat for lunch and dinner or are her medicines finished or if she needs a doc!
She seemed so innocent and helpless to Meera.
She heard stories of Ammaji from almost everyone in the family. All of them said the same thing. It seemed Ammaji use to be one Hitler of her times. Her instances of biasness were plenty. It was not just about boy and girl or daughter and daughter - in-law or son and daughter, it was among sons too!
She cared for the one who treated her like a piece of shit and cared least for the one who was always there for her literally 24*7! This was just one instance. She never encouraged the females in the house. She always considered them equivalent to the maids except for the fact that the maids did not entertained her sons in bed, other than that there was not even a single difference between her house staff and the DILs. She never empathized with them. She too had a daughter, the eldest amongst her kids, yet she cursed her DILs for giving birth to a girl child! She did not give food to them (even when they were pregnant!), whom she expected to be in the kitchen at 4 in the morning and cook for a family of 50! No one had the courage to argue or question Ammaji.. not even her husband! She was the perfect example of cruelty. She never allowed her sons to get bonded with her DILs. She abused them, treated them worse than animals, made them cry till their eyes were swollen and a million such stuff.
Time is above everything. Time heals all the wounds. It was her era then but now, not anymore.
Due to her old age and death of her husband, she felt lonely in the house. Her terror wasn't terrifying anymore. She was a helpless female.
She didn't even leave Meera for that matter. No, she wasn't that cruel to her. Meera use to feel really bad for her and so out of pity she use to sit with her for sometime. This happened for a few days. Meera always talked about Babaji.. how he was.. what all places did he take Ammaji to.. what were his hobbies.. what kind of a father, husband, grandfather he was. Meera knew Ammaji loved to talk about him. She felt contented. Days passed. Meera heard stories about herself. No other member of the family but Ammaji talked all non sense about her. She observed, Ammaji used to get really rude to her at times and castigated her without any reason. Meera was herself observing the behavior of the old lady and suddenly, all the stories that she heard started making sense to her. She was getting the answers to all the questions of why the old granny was aloof in the house. Ammaji was always partial towards the one who did not took care of her and was scared of them too. While the ones who spent sleepless nights to give her medicines or to take care of her declining health were the ones whom she'd taken for granted! And the pity that Meera had for Ammaji vanishes instantly.
The story doesn't ends here. The examples are plenty but it doesn't makes sense to garner all of them and make my readers feel terrible. :)
When I hear such stories, I feel whats the point of you living these many years with your loved ones when not even a single person in such a big family wants to spend a single minute with you. What have you done in your entire life? Forget about money, you've not even earned a single person for yourself, who will always be there for you from inside.. forget about me commenting on respect?! And in spite of all this, shes so adamant towards change.
May be Ammaji was suffering through loneliness coz of all the bad deeds she did in her youth. May be this was the lesson God was teaching her or may be this was how God was punishing her. Indeed, Karma is a bitch! The above story is its perfect example. As you sow, so you shall reap!
Feel free to share your thoughts. Would love to hear
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