"I had my baby within nine months of my marriage and this is how I was treated..."
When I broke the news in office, my close friend and colleague said, "Arey yaar, family planning kaa naam nahee sunaa thaa kya."
The one thing that comes free in India is unwarranted advice from all quarters of society. It goes without saying then that I was quite prepared for it when I got married in 2010. But I didn't expect that people would be so nosey and intrusive at times that they would actually end up hurting your sentiments without batting an eyelid!
Well, I got married seven years ago in a joint family in Delhi. I was 26 at that time and my husband is four years older than me. We were young, we were married, we were so much in love and we were so not planned for anything. Yes, that's right.
Like all married couples, we had thought of taking out some time for ourselves before we finally settled down and have kids. We had discussed these things during our six-month courtship and we thought that we will have everything in control.
The first two months went as planned and we were quite happy with our new life. My in-laws were caring, loving and so was my husband. And we were literally in seventh heaven... you know how it is when you are a newly married couple. We were so much in love, but suddenly something happened that literally swept the ground below our feet.
I fell sick in the third month of marriage...
We had just entered the third month of marriage and I suddenly fell sick. At first, I thought it was a tummy bug. I was vomiting all over the place and had terrible stomach cramps. I thought that it must be a stomach infection. However, my saasu maa came up to me and said," sab theek hai naa?"
I didn't get her initially.
I said: "Haan, aur kya. Sab theek hee hai, mummy."
But I was in for a shock and how!
The entire week was spent like that. I even took leave from office as I was not in a condition to go to work.
Finally, my mother-in-law came up to me and said: "Pregnancy test kar lo beta. Kaheen kuch hai toh nahee?"
I couldn't believe what she just said!!! I was into the third month of my marriage... how could I get pregnant so soon!
But what had to be done, had to be done. I got a kit from the local chemist and took the test and to my shock and horror.... it came out to be positive!
I won't say that I was not happy. I was... I mean I was going to have a baby, but to be frank, I was not prepared for it!!! And I never wanted to be pregnant in the first year of my marriage.
My husband had the same reaction but to our surprise the whole family was jubilant. In fact, my in-laws were the happiest.
"Beta, jitnee jaldee nipat jao utnaa achcha hai. Don't worry. We are there for you," my mother-in-law told me.
So we finally went to the doctor for a checkup and came to know that the baby was due in November, nine months after my wedding date, which was February 15.
But, the comments got nastier...
While we had all the support at home, the people around us couldn't stop commenting. When I broke the news in office, my close friend and colleague said, "Arey yaar, family planning kaa naam nahee sunaa thaa kya."
As if I had committed a crime?
"Yaar, what was the hurry? Ek saal toh ruk jaate," said another.
Even the relatives didn't spare us. They would openly say, "Yeh toh cheh maheene bhee nahee ruk paye.." and everyone would burst out laughing as if we had done something wrong! Everyone would make us feel embarrassed and ashamed of something that was not in our hands and something that would change our lives forever and for good!
Believe me, we tried all precautions, but maybe something went wrong and it happened. Yes, we were also not ready for the baby, but does that make it a topic of national debate? As a couple, we wanted to have this baby as this was our first and abortion was the last thing on my mind despite being a modern, working woman.
I thought if this is what God wants, then who am I to stop it? And my family was so happy and supportive! So what was the problem with these people? The very same people would have been after my life if I had not conceived after two or three years of my marriage. Don't you agree?
While I decided to ignore most of the comments and just keep the happy ones with me, trust me till today there are some people who come up to me and say,"Arey yaar! Thoda toh sabr kar lete!"
*The writer's name has been withheld on request
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