A Woman’s Tale

“Thank you for letting me stay at your place, Aahana, you’re a lifesaver.”

“Thank me again and I’ll throw you out right now! This is like your other home Trisha, or did you forget all the childhood memories we have at each other’s places?

“I know dude, but with all that has been happening, I’ve just started doubting all my relationships in life. Maybe it’s gonna take some while to get over these trust issues.”

“I can’t say I understand but know this that I’ll always be there for you, no matter what! So meanwhile, you can try to relax and get a good night’s sleep. We are meeting with them tomorrow, after a long long time.”

“Yep, I know. I’m excited too. Good Night”

All four friends were meeting after half a decade. Although they chatted and face-timed frequently, they had gotten quite busy with their schedules. This made it difficult to meet over the years, especially since three of them had shifted to different cities, with Aahana being the only one still residing in Dehradun. Her father owned a fancy river-side resort overseeing the beautiful snow-capped mountains, attracting a lot of tourists throughout the year. After completing her education, she took over the family business. She managed to expand it and build additional two resorts in other areas of the town, establishing herself as one of the most successful business-woman in the town.

Trisha had secured a high-profile job in a multinational company and is since working as a research associate in robotics. It had been her childhood dream to work in the field of robotics, which she was able to achieve three years ago. Her next goal is to join Boston Dynamics, and she has been working relentlessly to achieve that. 

Myra is a fitness trainer with expertise in CrossFit and callisthenics. She had developed a growing interest in physical fitness during her adolescence. The interest gradually evolved into her passion, making her a well-known callisthenics trainer in Delhi. Another reason she chose to become a trainer is to educate and train young girls to pursue physical strength to defend themselves whenever needed.

Rivaan was a full-time chef in a three-star hotel in Mumbai, as his love for food brought him closer to this profession. His passion also lay in writing and photography, making him a part-time author as well. He usually preferred being secretive about his future goals, although not as much as Myra.

Rivaan: “Welcome princesses, how may we serve you?!”

Aahana: “God, you haven’t changed a bit. Your sarcasm is still annoying, Rivaan!” “OMG Myra!! You look gorgeous, that dress suits you babe.”

“Thanks, dear, you look amazing as well, but not as cute as Trisha though! You’re slaying it, girl” commented Myra with a Z snap!

Trisha: “It has been almost five years and you’re still lively as ever Myra. How has life not mellowed you down yet?! Not that I want you to ever change, but still..you know..” 

Myra: “It’s life Trisha, it screws everyone, and changes us too. It’s just that, with time, you get better at faking yourself.”

Aahana: “True, well, let’s settle down first, we have enough time to keep cribbing about our lives, heh heh.”

Catching up was not the only reason the four childhood friends were meeting in this cafe. Trisha’s personal life was in turmoil, one that no one could have foreseen. She had gotten married to the love of her life a year ago. They loved each other a lot, and after a few years of dating, mutually decided to get married, in a low-key wedding ceremony. Everything seemed sorted for Trisha, both personally and professionally. However, life took an unexpected turn when the dynamics started to change after her marriage. 

“So Trisha, it has been a while. I did get to know about your situation from Aahana. How are you holding up?” enquired Rivaan. 

“Frankly, it has been very challenging, dude. Like, I never expected to face such a situation in life. I’m still confused about how to proceed with life and stuff…”, answered Trisha.

Myra has always been a realist and preferred being blunt even in sympathetic scenarios. Despite having heard from Aahana, she wanted to know the details personally from Trisha. To try to understand her perspective and opinions. 

“Trisha, if you wouldn’t mind, I would like to know about all of this in detail! We can’t advise or understand, before knowing the magnitude of the situation. I mean unless you find it triggering or uncomfortable.”

“No no, I’m perfectly alright discussing it.” “So things started to change after a month of our marriage. I was able to observe the subtle change in his behaviour. When he cancelled our honeymoon, I assumed it must be related to his immense workload. I later realised that he just viewed it as a luxurious expense instead of a romantic quality time. I could see that he was becoming distant and cold towards me. He rarely spent any time with me, even during the weekends. I just thought he must be very stressed with his work-life. Things started to escalate when my mother-in-law started forcing him to impregnate me. I sat her down and tried to convey my thoughts that I did want to become a mother, but not right now, maybe a few years down the line. I had just joined the company and I wanted to pursue my goals, and then think about having a child. Besides, I did not feel responsible enough to mother a kid. She pretended to understand but resumed her relentless badgering about this topic. That instigated a couple of quarrels between us. This went on for months, and after around six months or so, he wanted me to quit my job to focus on household chores. He literally said ‘You should try to become a better wife, Trisha. Look at my mom, she has been such a good wife and mother, she takes care of us, never argues with dad, looks after the house. You should learn from her.’ 

“WTF!!! I can’t believe that moron said that! He should’ve married his mother, that man-child!”

“Shut up Rivaan, let her complete. Until then keep your opinions to yourself!” snarled Myra.

“Don’t mind her dude, you know she has always been like that” stated Aahana. 

Trisha continued, “I had a similar feeling, Riv. This guy seemed like a totally different person than the one I had fallen in love with. He eventually started voicing his disagreements about my dressing style. I started facing restrictions about what I was allowed to wear, when and where I can go or whom I can meet. I was feeling like a caged bird, guys. There were days I spent crying in our room, I didn’t know what else to do. I wasn’t sure how my parents or you guys would react, which is why I never shared any of this with anyone.” Trisha had tears in her eyes while mentioning all of this. 

Myra hugged her tightly, wiping away her own teardrops. Even Aahana joined them and couldn’t hold back her emotions. An enraged Rivaan had his palms over his face, with a disgusted look. 

Trisha wiped her tears and calmed herself, as she sipped the cappuccino before her. Watching Rivaan and his expressions, she broke a mild laugh.

“Wow Riv, your constipated look cheered her. You are good for something, after all.” joked Myra.

“Haha very funny. On a serious note, you should’ve contacted us Trisha, if not us, at least Aahana. She is your best friend, she could’ve helped you through this.”

Trisha responded, “I know, but I just didn’t have the courage to do so. I could not take it anymore and decided to pack my bags and leave. I went home and told my parents everything. Even they cried for a bit, but you know what, they have been super supportive throughout. Especially when I expressed my resolve of divorcing him. When my so-called husband had come over to convince me to go back with him, dad politely gave him a piece of his mind. His insults were so epic and savage, even Myra would’ve given up before him.” Hearing this, all four started laughing. Their sadness and pity were converted to pride and joy. Kind of like Trisha’s father made all four of them proud. 

You don’t have to be anti-man to be pro-woman.

– JANE GALVIN LEWIS

“Uncle called me yesterday, mentioning all of this. I immediately went over and brought this idiot to my place. Of course, after scolding her for not sharing any of this!” frowned Aahana by throwing a fit with folded arms.

“I’m sorry na, how many times do I have to apologise” asked Trisha as she hugged Aahana, melting her heart away as usual. “Anyway, enough about me, whatssup with you guys?”

Rivaan replied, “Ohh, I just got a promotion and learned this new recipe of…”

“She meant about our personal lives, dimwit! We all saw your LinkedIn update, so stop bragging.” sighed Myra.

“Myra, You gotta stop bullying our poor Riv” said Aahana as she tried to sympathize with Rivaan.

Rivaan: “Ignore her, as I do. As for my love life, it’s practically non-existent. There is this girl I like, but she’s not so interested in me, like Myra…” 

“I don’t blame her” laughed Myra as the girls exchanged high-fives. She continued, “You poor baby, come, you deserve a hug!” 

“I know you’re kidding but I’ll take that hug!” responded Riv as they both hugged, while he received a pity pat on his head by all three girls.

Myra: “Well, I am dating this guy in Delhi, he is cool. I’ll think about bringing him along next time we meet.”

Aahana: “That’s the most we can expect Myra to share. Gotta say you’re still secretive as ever. You’ve hardly changed.”

Myra responded with shrugged shoulders, as she knew Aahana was right.

Aahana: “Sooo, I am neither dating anyone, nor do I intend to any time soon. For the time being, I just want to focus on the resorts and think of new ways to expand the business. I am enjoying this at the moment. It’s fun. I am also thinking of making this idiot lend her help while she’s here.” They stared at Aahana with inspirational eyes. 

Rivaan: “Oh by the way girls, Happy Women’s Day to all of you”

All three girls looked at each other and mockingly clapped for Riv as if to show their appreciation. 

Rivaan: “Of course I remembered, I also wrote a blog on it. It’s a little longer than usual but I think you will like it since it is loosely based on our lives.”

Trisha: “I’m sure we will Riv. I assure you, at least I will be reading it.”

The group talked about their lives, laughed, reminisced, and had fun for the next hour or so. They did come up with a vacation plan for the next month, maybe to Bali or Maldives. They got up and were getting ready to leave. It was Riv’s treat, courtesy of his promotion and bragging. 

After reaching home, Rivaan’s younger brother was waiting for him. He was eager to ask his brother something. Greeting him, he started pulling his t-shirt and asked “Bhaiyaa, you wrote an entire blog on Women’s day, are women so important?”

Rivaan took a moment and then replied, “Yes buddy, because I believe women are naive to compare themselves with men. Right from a young age, they face so much discrimination based on their appearance, skin colour, personality, sexuality. They are judged based on their clothing, their decisions, how they speak, how they interact, how they walk. They are universal victims of eve-teasing, catcalling, sexual assaults, molestations, harassments, sexism, patriarchy, oppression and prejudice. A biological woman bleeds monthly for three to seven days for the majority of her life, causing them extreme pain and discomfort through multiple cramps, bowel syndromes, fatigue, appetite issues, cravings, nausea, vomiting, mood swings, headaches, body aches and maybe even more problems. She has to bear the unimaginable pain during pregnancy and childbirth, while some government officials decide whether she can opt for abortion or not. Despite all these numerous challenges, a woman rises through all adversities, conquers her ambitions and stands tall, while maintaining her divinity, compassion and strength. Manages her professional and personal life perfectly, and yet struggles to receive the respect, admiration, and love, she so damn deserves!”

“Now tell me, my dear bro, do you think women are equal to men or are they superior to us? Is my one blog enough to express all I want to convey? Will it be enough to indemnify for all the prevalent male privilege and ignorance? Or am I just being a pseudo-feminist?

“Bhaiyaa, what is a pseudo-feminist?”

Riv smiled and carried his brother to the bedroom. “Let’s play FIFA and discuss that…I’ll beat you so bad this time, you’ll cry!”

“Nooo, I will beat you. You always cheat. I’ll play with Real Madrid this time!”

I don’t know a woman alive who isn’t courageous.

– Reese Witherspoon

Dedicated to all the women out there… Happy Women’s Day!🙇🏻‍♂️

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4 thoughts on “A Woman’s Tale”

  1. Wow, Rithik, love this one. A woman never asks for equality or superiority, all she wants is the respect that she deserves.

    1. Thank you so much, Mona. I agree, and that’s why this story was written, in an effort to voice a woman’s struggles. Glad you liked it. 😇

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