To me love has always been gentle, subtle and breezy. It is that feeling of happiness that lingers on even after the words have been said, the looks been exchanged and the feelings been shared.
Given my obsession with love, the romantic love specifically, I had one wish – to have a love marriage. I knew it was difficult. I was aware that no one ever before had had love marriage in my entire clan (if I may claim so). But then what love it is if it does not surpass such odds? What worth that love is which comes easy?
I dreamt of growing old as a happily married woman narrating my love-adventures to my naughty grand children. I wished I had an interesting love story to tell to people who would in return exclaim in squeals of aah! and wow! and lovely!
I saw my dreams getting shattered when I was on the verge of getting married without any sign of love. My father had announced that I would have to have an arranged marriage. Given my rebellious nature, I would have let that announcement go, had I been in love with someone!
Finally, a proposal came my way. We talked for a while. I had not even seen his picture but had said yes to him. Both the parties agreed and we got married.
|Both of us in our early days of marriage|
One evening he gently whispered ‘I love you’ and I felt butterflies fluttering in my stomach but I could not respond with the exact same three words.
Another evening I whispered to him, ‘I think I am falling in love with you’ and he smiled conveying, ‘I am waiting for you to get deep in it’.
Call it a traditional marriage or a convenient arrangement, we were two individuals living under one roof in one small room of a palatial government guest house, getting accustomed to each other’s habits and thinking process.
He needed breakfast ready before he could get out of the bed and I couldn’t stay inside on a weekend. He hated eggs and couldn’t stand the sight of anything non-veg while I craved for some red color in my food plate. He would read and watch news while I wanted to cry along the TV soaps. Yet we lived peacefully and lovingly. Discovering each other in our own sweet ways.
I would open the door before he could knock, for I had learnt to recognize his foot steps when he walked down the lobby. I sat with Sanjeev Kapoor’s website open and spent hours on my mini stove to cook atleast one small thing of his choice (and a dustbin full of failed recipes). He, on the other hand would mostly keep quiet. When he had to express it, he would just come and hug me.
And then the day came. I had a terrible tooth ache and discovered that I would need a surgery for my molar extraction. It was deep impacted and required a small operation. We were in Port Blair and the doctors there advised to go to mainland for the surgery as it couldn’t be performed in Port Blair (there was no oral surgeon in Andaman). I had to immediately rush to Kolkata, the nearest mainland city.
Husband silently had made all the arrangements of my stay, doctor’s visit and medical care in Kolkata. I stayed in a guest house that had wi-fi. Thank God! Thank God that my man remembered that I was addicted to internet and that if I had internet, I almost had everything for my comfortable stay.
I stayed in Kolkata for 4 days and planned to stay there for another set of 4 days so that surgery, including the removal of stitches, was also done under expert guidance.
On the third day of my stay, I chatted with my husband back in Port Blair.
He did not have much to say except that he felt incomplete and that his life suddenly felt empty without me. For a man who does not say much usually, confessing to a thought as intense as this requires a great deal of honesty and emotions and yes, emptiness.
He signed off the chat soon saying ‘lots of hugs!’
Next morning I had to visit my dentist for the checkup but I instead headed to the airport.
Within two hours, at 8:30 am, I was at Port Blair airport. Quietly (and with lot of pain in a swollen mouth) I entered my guest house in Port Blair and stood behind the door of the lobby. I wanted to surprise him.
As he appeared out of the room, locked the door and began walking, I knew it was him. I recognized the sound of his steps and without looking or peeping out of the door side way, I called out his name, ‘Sanjay!’
The steps were frozen. There was no noise in the lobby. After a brief pause, the footsteps made sound again, away from me. I thought maybe my sense of ‘recognising his footsteps’ has ditched me but my heart repeatedly shouted that I couldn’t be wrong. So, I called out again ‘Sanjay!’
This time I could sense that the footsteps were rushing towards me. As I lifted my head, I saw him standing right in front of me.
‘I love you Surabhi’ he announced, not only to me but to the world.
‘I love you too Sanjay’, I proudly admitted.
He looked at me, caressed my swollen right cheek, hugged me tightly and took me inside the room. The small room of the guest house now looked like a home.
I knew I was in my home!
‘So good you came back. I would take care of you here’, he said looking into my eyes and added, ‘I did not know somebody would become a part of me so soon.’
‘Really. Didn’t you ever miss anyone so much before?’
‘No. I didn’t. I was a kid when I lost my parents. Only after I lost both of them, I began to miss them. But where was the time to miss anyone? I had to work hard to make both the ends meet for myself and my remaining family. Only after my marriage to you, for the first time in the last 15 years, I learnt what having a family means!’
I looked into his dewy eyes, hugged him and said, ‘okay now. Let me set up my home quickly.’
That day was the day. The day of my love. After about 3 months of our marriage. That was the day when I made a home out of a room.
This was the poem that I composed to express it all:
Amidst all chaos, turmoil
Disturbances & disruptions
Interventions & interruptions
You entered my life
Snailing gently on my mind
Like the baby who
Trods quietly on the staircase
In his quest of height.
My stumbling steps came to a standstill
My wandering mind took some rest,
My eyes stopped looking around,
Just to look within myself.
And there I saw you
Calling out for me,
With the purest thoughts
Keeping your arms open
Waiting for me!
That was our platinum day of love! Just like the platinum our love is eternal, shining, becoming shinier day by day (4 years and going strong) and it can well stand the test of time. The day marked the beginning of an ever after journey that both of us started with hand in hand. This love that I discovered is about the love that two people share who have sworn to live life with each other. It may not be romantic always but it is here to stay.
It is Platinum’s rarity that makes it the most preferred metal to celebrate everlasting love. Just like true love which is rare but forever, Platinum is rare too but once found, it stays. Stays forever, shining as brightly as a star. Just like an everlasting love that has a light and strength of its own, Platinum too shines with its own luminosity, like a true star.
This love, unlike diamond, does not shine in light. It shines in darkness. It gives me light when it is all dark around. It guides me when I fail to see beyond myself. This love is now the motive of my life.
It is placid and yet moving. It is true love.