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Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad

October 2, 2009 1 comment

I wonder, by my troth, what thou and I did ere we loved.
John Donne. HA

33 years. These two words conjure up such images in my mind that can never be adequately verbalised. It is my parents’ 33rd wedding anniversary. It is hard to believe they have survived the relationship and each other. I feel relieved, surprised, satisfied and amused to see them (or rather, think of them, as I am in Lucknow) together. The bottomline is, I staunchly believe that they are the most beautiful, and the happiest couple in the world right now.

They were not perfect to begin with, and the ten-year age gap between them does not even begin to take the blame. They belonged to different backgrounds; mom hailed from a family shrouded in discipline and was given in marriage at the young age of 21 to my dad. Hell, at 21, my sister and I were toddlers that had just outgrown their nappies.

Dad came from a family where all was fun and games. Discipline, though not unheard of, was largely figurative. Neither dad nor any of his siblings knew how to take their lives seriously. Dad was a particularly imaginative child and till date, old and greying relatives remember his stories. On the other hand, novels and movies were considered deadly sins in Mom’s household.

Needless to say, mom was downright flabbergasted when she stepped into her new house. One major problem was that, while dad and his entire family were blessed with a raucous sense of humor (which has been inherited by sis and me), mom was a stoic, very sensitive individual. Throughout the marriage, Dad’s playful comments malignantly grew into major feuds. Even now, mom cannot withstand several of my well-meaning taunts and this makes it very difficult for me to talk to her. It is only lately that she has begun to realise it is my twisted way of expressing love and affection.

Several other problems came up, including financial issues. So many times a severance seemed inevitable. Yet, against all odds they carried on, supporting each other, compromising, sharing, learning. Dad helped mom to finish her studies and established her career for her. She set up a beautiful home for him and in the later years, saw him through an extended period of ill-health, caring for him in every way possible.

Yes, they have their flaws. They are not the perfect couple. But they are the perfect parents. They are the foundation upon which my sister and I have built our successful lives. They corrected us when we were wrong, and supported us against all odds when we needed a backbone. Of all the things they taught us knowingly and unknowingly, the most important has been how to maintain the balance and sanctity of marriage.

I wish them well for the years to come. Hopefully, eighteen years from now, their bright grandchildren, greying daughters and over-weight sons-in-law will be giving them a stupendous party, where their love and togetherness will envied and coveted by all. Here’s to mom and dad.
HA2

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Categories: Reflections