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Arranged Marriage

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Manzi was a girl, who was leading a happy life. She was the eldest daughter of her family. From childhood, she had many dreams to fulfill. The moment she was born it was a celebration, she brought a smile on the face of her parents as soon as she was born. Manzi’s family was not so affluent, they were from the middle-class. Manzi’s father was a man of hard work and dedication. He was ready to do anything for the sake of his daughter. He wanted to provide her with all that he can. He dreamt that one day his daughter would be the one, who is a role-model to thousands. He wanted to give her the best education and hence worked day and night. Manzi’s mother was a home-maker, who had been with Manzi throughout. She spent her whole life, making Manzi a refined and intelligent child. She cared for both her daughters and could not bear to leave them alone. She made the home a heaven for both her daughters.

            Manzi was a quiet child, she loved her parents and younger sister so much that she lived each and every moment in their thoughts. Manzi was admitted in a school as soon as she was three and half years old. She still remembers the first day of her school. She cried a lot as it was her first small separation from her family. Manzi got used to school and started to concentrate on her studies. Her mother was a great support for Manzi’s education. She encouraged her daughter to study well. Manzi started scoring very high marks in all the subjects. It was a dream come true for Manzi’s parents. Manzi loved her parents and hence their happiness made her learn well.

            Though everything was set in Manzi’s life, things started to take a twist when the whole family had to move to a new city regarding the work of Manzi’s father. Manzi was given admission in a new school that was totally different from that of her previous one. Manzi struggled a lot for the first year but later started coping up with the new school and friends. Manzi finished her schooling in that particular girl’s matriculation higher secondary school and began a new life in her college that awaited her with a lot of surprises.

            Though the college was for women, it provided Manzi with in depth knowledge not only of the subject she chose to study but also about life. Manzi entered the college as a very quiet girl who doesn’t have much knowledge about the society and world but her seven years of college life taught her great lessons of life. She started participating in almost all the competitions that was held in the college as well as the inter-collegiate meet. She also got awards and certificates from various colleges. Manzi developed herself through active participation in almost all the events.

            Manzi also concentrated in her studies. She valued her father’s hardwork and hence strived very hard to get good marks. Manzi also joined many other courses than her subject of study and also completed them in time. She did her UG, PG and also her Master of Philosophy in the same college. She obtained first class with distinction in all her courses. Now Manzi was an independent girl, who was ready to face the society by her own. She started working in a school and then in a college as an assistant professor. Both in school and college, Manzi was admired by the students for her soft and kind nature. Her colleagues used to describe her as a one with helpful and cooperative nature.

            Manzi started to complete her dreams one by one. She did everything that she can do to make her parents happy. Her happiness lied in that of her parents smile. Manzi’s parents were proud of her. They were so happy for their daughter’s progress in life at the age of 24. They were satisfied that their hard work has borne fruits. They wanted their daughter to lead a happy life and she was doing so. It is at this point of time that the parents of Manzi felt that it was time for their daughter to get married. They wanted a son-in-law who could make their little princess the queen of his life. They started their quest for son-in-law. Their search was so deep that, they decided to marry off their daughter within one year.

            Manzi’s life was to take a different turn from now on. She was surrounded by proposals from different places. Though Manzi had a number of dreams about her life, she had no expectations regarding her future husband. In other words, she did not have any conditions on how her better half should be. She was ready to accept the person as he was. She promised herself that as she had an identity of her own, so is the one whom she was going to marry. She was whole-heartedly ready to marry someone who lived his life with his own identity even after marriage. Manzi’s only request to her parents was that the person that she marries would be the one who is approved by both of her parents.

            It was then the entry of George in the life of Manzi. Manzi’s profile was updated in a matrimonial site and it was George who send the proposal online. Manzi who expected the approval of her parents for marriage wished to see the person only when he came to their house for their first meeting. It was a Sunday afternoon when Manzi and her parents were in the church that Manzi’s father gets a call from George’s father saying that they were already at the place and would like to meet Manzi. Though Manzi’s family had a lot of preparations, the meeting became an unexpected one and it is then Manzi meet George for the first time. George was with his father, who had a number of questions for his future daughter-in-law. Manzi noticed George right from the beginning. He was a very quiet person who carried a smile on his face. Manzi found out that there was something similar in both of their traits. Manzi was happy that she could meet George, who loved his parents as much as she loved hers. The meeting went on very well. George and his father left after sometime.

            Manzi decided that George could be of great support to her in the future as he was educated and respectful towards his parents. Days went on and the proposal had to be taken to the next step. Though Manzi loved the mannerisms of George in their first meeting, she was not aware of where George was exactly from. It was then the parents of Manzi decided to visit George’s house. They returned back informing Manzi that everything was okay and they all liked George’s place. George was the only son of his parents. He was born and brought up in an orthodox family. Most of his childhood was in the boarding. George loved his parents so much, in fact he respected his parents much more than that of a son. Both of his parents were teachers.

            Manzi’s marriage was thus fixed with George. They exchanged their phone numbers. Thus, began the beautiful journey of Manzi and George. They started talking to each other about them. They started to share their feelings for one another and it was a fabulous start for both Manzi and George. The dates of Engagement and marriage was fixed. This was the time when the pandemic Corona slowly entered India, shattering the lives of many. Yes, it had plans also to destroy the smooth progress of Manzi’s and George’s life. They were from different states and hence they were both under the lock down. The dates of engagement and marriage had to be changed. The life of Manzi and George had also started to face a different phase. Though Manzi and George used to converse daily, they had to wait. They had to wait for the pandemic to get over. They had to wait inorder to come out of their houses. They had to wait to meet each other in person. They had to wait for their marriage to take place.

            Months passed by and it was ten one fine day Manzi’s father decided to fulfill the dream of his daughter to get married to George. The family except Manzi’s father moved to another state, where George was there. The three: Manzi, her mother and her sister had to stay in their grandmother’s house for 14 days. They were under observation, they were quarantined, they suffered severely under the strict rules of the state but was happy that at least now the marriage would happen without any delay. After a lot of struggle the engagement took place and it was only when Manzi reached the church for the ceremony she came to know the truth that her father was not allowed to participate in that engagement of hers. She was completely shattered from within but could not express her feelings as she was bound with the responsibility of taking in notice of the people who had already arrived to attend her engagement. She was not in a position to disappoint George and his family saying that she will not agree for this engagement ceremony unless her father attends it. Atlast the engagement took place, the one who had made his daughter who she is today couldn’t attend the ceremony, this was the first blow that Manzi had to face in her life. Her dear father couldn’t bless her at the moment she was engaged to George.

            After one week there was a “grand” wedding for Manzi and George following all the restrictions of the pandemic ‘Corona’. It was for the first time that Manzi saw her family far from her. They were standing in a corner watching their daughter who was happily married. Manzi felt the distance between her and her family for the first time. It was time for Manzi’s family to leave her with her in laws. Everyone except cried a lot during the departure. A new beginning for Manzi was actually a very new beginning lots of surprises and shocks awaiting her in the form of George and his parents. Manzi was unaware of all this. She entered George’s family with new hopes and responsibilities.

            A grand welcome was given to Manzi by George and his family. Manzi entered a family that had three different personalities. George was a person who was silent not only by nature but also at times when he has to speak. He was the only son in the family but did not get the care and affection of his parents right from childhood. His parents provided him with everything that he needed, but he lacked the attention of his parents. He spent most of his childhood in the boarding as well as in his relative’s house rather than with his parents. He dreamt to live with his family and this was the sole reason that he agreed for the marriage. He thought that if he would marry, he will get the love, attention and care of his parents. He wanted a life in which he can take decisions of his own rather than his father’s.

            George’s father was a man of hypocrisy. He wanted things to happen only according to his wish. He enjoyed his life to the fullest but did not realise the fact that he leads a happy life by the sacrifice of her son and his wife, who doesn’t dare to speak anything that makes him angry. He is a reputed person in the society but leads a very mean family life. He preaches about feminism to everyone he meets but does not treat his wife well. He says that every other child in this society should be given an opportunity to take decisions on their own but has not allowed his only son to lead a life on his own even when he has turned 31. He has strict rules and conventions in his life that he wanted his family to follow without any questions. His life went according to a time table right from early in the morning till the moment he goes to bed. He had strictly trained his wife and son for this particular timetable. As a whole he was a person who said something but lived a life that was entirely different from that of reality.

            George’s mother was the one who suffered a lot in her family before marriage, so she thinks her husband to be an angel, a guardian angel who had come to protect her life by marrying her. She loves her husband.  No, no actually she worships her husband. She treats him next to God. She doesn’t have a voice of her own, she is completely submerged by her husband’s thoughts and ideals. She enjoys to remain there silently and peacefully. She finds peace in giving all her earnings to her husband and beg him even for a single penny. She loves to work continuously from early morning to midnight without any rest and likes to be treated as a slave by her husband. She suffers a lot from within but doesn’t bother about her identity anymore. She loves her son blindly, but has made him silent before her husband. She has made her son completely silent and ignorant. She has unknowingly set a bad example of how a wife would be and should be to her husband to her son.

            As few days pass by Manzi is introduced to all these three traits of her new family members. Her first task was to adjust with the timetable that was created by her father-in-law. The family follows this particular time table everyday even on Sundays. This was very new to Manzi, but she was ready to tolerate this because of her love for George. She strives hard to be a member of her new family, she adopts to the new circumstances slowly. But unfortunately, misunderstandings start to pop up in the family especially between Manzi and George. George turns out to be an insecure person. He is afraid that Manzi doesn’t love him and she has married him only for the sake of money. Though George is tormented from within he does not take a single effort to explain things to Manzi. He is not ready to share his insecurities with her rather his misunderstandings turn into anger towards Manzi. He couldn’t tolerate the relationship that Manzi shared with that of her in laws. George wanted the care and affection of his parents as well as his wife but he decided that his parents and wife should not have a good relationship. For this he decided to create confusion among his parents and wife. From then onwards he starts to complain about his wife Manzi to his parents. Manzi who was unaware of all this struggled a lot to cope up with the new family despite all differences.

            George started to feel depressed as he felt he was inferior to his wife Manzi. George was a person who does not have more friends and who does not meet up with people. He was a reserved person, who was only into himself. He was not happy with his wife Manzi, but acted in front of her very beautifully. He started to find mistakes in her, but he was not ready to talk to Manzi about what he felt about her but rather found it very easy to go and complain to his parents about his wife. By this actually George wanted the care and support of his parents but he didn’t analyse the truth that his wife who has left her family for his sake was left alone. As days went by Manzi started feeling lonely in George’s house. All that Manzi expected from her husband was love, care and attention, but all that Manzi was given is nothing, absolutely nothing. She was a fool who couldn’t even realise the true motives behind her husband’s smile. He smiled at her, spent some time with her but was not ready to open up his thoughts with her. He preferred complaining about her to his family and thereby degrading her in front of her family.

            After the effort of two months. Yes, just two months he was successful in humiliating his wife completely in front of his family. Manzi’s in laws had a very bad opinion about her and they started to judge her for everything she does. They started to behave indifferently to her. Manzi who was unaware of her husband’s plot completed all her responsibilities towards her husband as well as his family. While Manzi was working towards the development of her relationship with George and his Family, George had completely made Manzi a cruel human being in front of his parents. It was actually a shock for Manzi when she was questioned by her in laws for the mistakes that she had never done. She faces a completely different family of George in front of her after all her sacrifices. Manzi is completely shattered not because she was questioned but because she was misunderstood by her husband right from their marriage. For seconds she didn’t know how to react. She was shooted with questions that she had never dreamt of.             Manzi decided to solve all this by having a small talk with her husband in private, but the situation was totally out of her control. Her husband was not ready to hear her, her in laws had already decided her to be a mentally unstable person. George was a person who always remained in the good books of people. He valued that particular good name rather than spending atleast five minutes with his wife to clear the problems that he had himself created. From the day of marriage Manzi has face a lot in her life but she had sorted it all within her in laws family rather than taking it to hers. But George was not that matured to understand Manzi. Even after knowing all the truth that her husband was the sole reason to the problems in her life, Manzi was ready to talk but George no more wanted Manzi in his life and that might be the reason why went on taking this issue to the public rather than talking with Manzi. George was happy that his parents supported him at least now, in the support of his parents he criticized Manzi more and made her feel useless in that family. Not even once did he think that even Manzi was a human being who had feelings and emotions. Therefore after 154 days of her married life, Manzi decided to say good bye to her beloved George. She is happy for him that at least now he could get the love and care of his parents. George even today thinks that he was right, he is a man and his wife should be always with him tolerating his silence. Manzi loves George, there is no doubt in that but they are not meant to be together and Manzi knows this very well and she accepts this. Arranged marriage is always special and it remains to be so, a onetime experience in life.

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5 thoughts on “Arranged Marriage

  1. Perfect as it is..!

    “Do Not look for healing at the feet of those who broke you”
    ~Rupi kaur

  2. I wished for a happy ending.

  3. · May 30, 2021 at 6:46 pm

    Life answers all the questions that we ask when we are ready to understand it’s answers. My deep love to Manzi.

  4. Real! Happening! Good that Mansi is an understanding girl, wishing her all that is good!