Sunday, November 28, 2010

A Necessary Death

A Necessary Death By Bissme S

I really believed, to save my marriage and my sanity, Jhanvi must die. There was no two ways about it. Her death was a necessity. So I planned a perfect murder. Everyone including my husband and the authority believed her death was a tragedy.

Truly, our marriage was a happy one till Jhanvi walked into our lives. I really cannot comprehend my husband's obsession for Jhanvi.
Jhanvi had a face that was so revolting. But in his eyes, Jhanvi was beautiful…. Jhanvi was perfect. She was his number one priority. Everything and everyone including me, his wife, came second.
He took two jobs just to make sure Jhanvi had the best things that money could buy. His two jobs took most of his time and he rarely had any free time. When he had free time to spare, he spent every moment with Jhanvi.
I was feeling neglected and ignored. For the longest time, I just bite my tongue and suffered silently. Then came a day I can't take it anymore.
"Parvathy, try to understand, Jhanvi needs me more than you, " he justified his action.
It was an intense argument where I ended with tears and it was not our last argument about Jhanvi.
"You are letting Jhanvi to kill our relationship," I said.
"She has taken over our lives and our marriage."
With each argument, my hatred for Jhanvi increased. I was convinced as long as Jhanvi was alive, my husband and I would not be happy.
Before Jhanvi, I was everything to him. But now, everything changes. Jhanvi was everything and I was nothing.
But I was determined to change that. I was not going to be a second fiddle to Jhanvi, anymore. I was going to win my husband back at any cost, even if I had to kill Jhanvi.
My first strategy was painting a fake picture that I really cared about Jhanvi. Naturally my husband was happy with my change of attitude. He really believed my emotions for Jhanvi was real. Men are so easy to fool.
"I love you and I will do anything to make our marriage work," I lied.
I did not want him suspecting that I had anything to do with her death.

My plan to kill her came months ago when I bumped into a snake charmer in a funfair. I offered him a lot of money to kill Jhanvi.
When Jhanvi was fast sleep and my husband was away at his job, I let the snake charmer into my house. He went to Jhanvi’s room and let one of his snakes to bite her.
The following morning, the maid found Jhanvi dead and screamed her heads off. The ambulance was called. So was the police.
They all came to conclusion that a snake had roamed into our house and bitten her. My husband became a broken man. He became depressed, lost all hope for life. For months, he would only stay in bed without shaving.
It was during this time, I played a dutiful wife, trying to be understanding, patience and ultimately, giving him the motivation to continue living.
"Jhanvi is not really dead," I said to him.
"She is up there in heaven. And when she looks down and see you in this pathetic condition, she will be utterly sad."
Those words were enough to spark him out of his depression. He can't have his precious Jhanvi shedding tears of misery, at any cost. He made every effort to be happy. He made every effort to live life again.
It has been two years since Jhanvi left us. As I had predicted, her death was a blessing disguise. We were happier.
He no longer had to hold two jobs. He had more time to spend with me. We were also better off, financially. There was no Jhanvi to take care of.
He was flourishing where his career was concerned. He didn't have Jhanvi to distract his attention. He was awarded as the Best Insurance Sales Man. In his award accepting speech, he sang high praise of me.
"Parvathy, you are the best wife that any man can have," he said.
If only he knew the truth of what I have done, he would hate me and most likely, end our marriage. Frankly speaking I would not blame him. His action would be justified. Which man could love the woman who murdered their daughter?

Oh yes, Jhanvi was his daughter and also mine. I remembered we were jumping with joy when we first learned that I was pregnant. We were so eager to become parents.
Like all parents, we expected a healthy baby. But that was not written in our fate. Jhanvi was born as a retard. Our heart sank when we learnt this.
With time, my husband learnt to accept the fact and came to love her, regardless her condition. But I had a hard time accepting my flawed baby.
Jhanvi was not an easy task. When she was a toddler, she would cry her hearts out and it would take me hours to calm her down. Her wailing would drive me nuts.
Surprisingly, my husband had more patience with her. Then as she grew older, her tantrums stopped. No more wailing. Finally, I thought the good times are here.
But I was deadly wrong. Things became more difficult. Things became more complicated. It was then, the reality hit me - Jhanvi would never get better.
She would be a vegetable for the rest of her life. She would be a burden for my husband and me and we had to look after her for the rest of our lives.
The most dreadful experience was going out with Jhanvi in public places. She would attract unwanted attention. Her head was bigger that her body. She looked like a freak that just step out from a horror film.
Her state of mind made her unconscious to the stares and the attention around her. But I didn't have her state of mind. A big dose of embarrassment enveloped me. Silently, I was furious at God for giving me, Jhanvi. I remember what the priest told me when I had expressed my disappointment.
"Whatever God had given us, we should accept as a gift," the priest expressed his words of wisdom.
"God loved everyone unconditionally and we should strive to be like him."
That was easy for the priest to say. Day in and day out, he didn’t have to live with her. He didn’t have to walk beside her. But I had to. What kind gift God had given me? Well I was not happy with the gift and I wanted to return the gift back to God.
So I planned a perfect murder. She was hardly 12 when she died. Initially, my guilt bugged me. My inner conscious reminded me that being her mother, I should love her, unconditionally.
Instead, heartlessly, I murdered her. It made my stomach churned inside- out. Guilt danced in my soul. I had disturbing nightmares about thousand snakes was chasing after me.
Then slowly, I justified myself that Jhanvi was in a better place … she was in heaven … she was with God who could love everyone unconditionally. I could not love her so I have sent her to a place where she would be loved. This fact was enough to drive away all my guilt. Slowly, the nightmares where thousand snakes were chasing after me also stopped. In the end, I learned that sometimes to be truly happy, one needs to be a little selfish.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

The Lovers

The Lovers By Bissme S

We were tired of keeping our affair a secret. We wanted to abandon our spouses. We wanted to abandon our children. We were willing to take the risk of them hating us, forever. We planned everything carefully. We would migrate to Sydney, Australia. Nobody knows us in Sydney and we could start our life fresh.
But when the time finally came, we didn't have the guts and the hearts to abandon our spouses and our children. They did nothing wrong except to love us with all their heart. They will have a hard time digesting the truth.
In the end, we ended our affair and went back to our family. We decided that was for the best. Deep down our hearts, we knew if we did what we had, years to come, we would regret it and we will not be able to forgive ourselves. We might even blamed each other for the sins we had committed and whatever love we had for each other will vanish.
"I would rather have my heart broken than to break their hearts," Ramesh told me.

Ramesh was my first love and I never had the guts to tell him what I felt. I was afraid of the consequences. I was afraid that he might not feel the same way about me. I was afraid that my confession might drive him away and I would not see him, anymore. I was not willing to lose our friendship. We were best friends since our childhood days.
We were hardly 10 when we first met. His family had just moved into our neighborhood and lived the next door to us. Both of our families immediately created an instant bond. Both of our fathers were crazy about football and that subject alone was enough to get them talking for hours.
Our mothers, on the other hand, were mad about Bollywood movies and shopping. Since our parents were always spending so much time together, we became close too. I can’t really pinpoint the exact time when I began to regard him more than a friend. My feelings for him happen so naturally.
My heart was broken when I received his wedding card. I conjured excuses so I didn’t have to attend his wedding. I can't bring myself to see the man I loved tying knot with someone else ... building a future without me. Since his marriage, I purposely put a distance between him and me. I see less of him.
Whenever he call and asked to meet up, I always find some kind of excuses. I thought the less I see him, the less I would feel hurt. It was a difficult task of avoiding him. He was after all my neighbor. That is not all. We were teaching in the same university.
I, often prayed, that he would move far away from me. Seeing him with his wife makes me very sad… reminding me of the life I will never have with him. God answered my prayers when he got a teaching position in one of the well-known universities in Sydney, Australia. I didn’t go the airport to see them for the last time. I just sent a goodbye card with an expensive present.
I really believed his absence would make me forget him. But I was really wrong. No matter what I did, I can never really forget him. I believe marriage will cure my broken heart and give me new dreams. To a certain degree my marriage and my two young sons had kept me busy but still I have not forgotten the moments I spend with Ramesh. His memories never stopped haunting me.
He never stopped sending letters, presents and cards to me on my birthdays. But I never replied any of his letters; and his presents always end up in the dustbin, un-opened.

Five years had passed by and out of the blue, he and his wife Manjula decided to return home. Manjula hated everything about Sydney and wanted desperately to return to Malaysia. He simply complied. He looks a little older but still dashingly handsome. He is a father to a set of twins. He was back as my neighbor again.
By then, both of our parents had passed away. His died on a car crash while mine passed away of old age. I inherited my parent’s home while he inherited his parent’s home. Life is full of ironies. Our parents were neighbors and now we are neighbors. Things got worse when he got his old job back in the university where I was teaching. We became colleagues again.
I asked myself why God has played this cruel joke. Why can't God make him stay in Sydney forever?
He tries his best to resume our friendship. He wanted us to be close again. Strangely enough he doesn't hold any grudges that I didn't reply any of his letters from Australia. I tried my best to give him a cold shoulder, always finding excuses not to spend time with him. But he doesn't seem to get the hints that I didn't want to see him anymore.
It was then I decided that I should tell him the truth, not caring whatever consequences. I should not keep all these feeling bottled up. Perhaps, the revelation will be good for my suffering soul. I would feel a sense of freedom. I feel like a caged bird that desperately wants to be free. I wrote a long letter expressing the feelings I had for him and begged him to stay far away from me.
When I handed him the letter, I said to him: "After reading this letter, I am sure you want nothing to do with me." I walked away without looking back. Within the hour, he called me and said he wanted to see me. He came with his car to pick me up after my classes.
We drove for hours in silence. When the car stopped in deserted area, to my shock, he kissed me, passionately. Only then, I realized he too had the similar feeling for me since his childhood days. Like me, he was too afraid to express his emotion. It was a beginning of our affairs.
We became the sinful lovers. We were smart enough to keep our affair a secret. Nobody suspected a thing. After two years of our affair, we got tired of all that lies, pretending and charades. We wanted some honesty in our relationship. It was then that Ramesh suggested he could ask the college in Sydney if they had any teaching vacancies.
"Our lucks are good. We have jobs waiting for us," Ramesh told me rather excitedly over the phone.
We wanted a fresh beginning in Sydney as a pair of lovers starting a new life together. No more lies, no more pretending and no more charades. But in the end, our conscious got the better of us. We knew we couldn't bring this misery on our spouses and our children.
We can't build our joys and our happiness on their sorrows and their misery. At the same time, we could not continue our affair like before. The lies, the charades and the pretending were taking toll on us. Guilt was killing us slowly. We decided that it was best that we ended our affair.
Ramesh found a teaching job in Singapore and decided to shift there. Distance will put an end to our affair definitely. He sold the house. It was a clear indication; he was not coming back anymore, at least not to my neighborhood.
My heart breaks to see him go. But I had to let him go... for him ... for me... for our wives... for our children ... for all of us. As I reminiscence my love story, I am looking out of the window and see my two sons are playing football. I pray neither of my sons will lead the life I had ... neither of them must feel the way I feel ... neither of them have to make sacrifices I had to make… neither of them must be a homosexual in the closets. They must have a happy ending.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Wrong Woman

The Wrong Woman By Bissme S

“Only death could give me the peace I wanted so badly.”Those were the only words Prakash had written in his suicide note. He went to a railway track, took out all his clothes and ran towards a moving train.
Everyone was surprised that a vibrant man like Prakash had taken his own life. But not me. I knew his reasons perfectly well.He had fallen in love with the wrong woman. Never once, had he expressed his true feelings to her. He was fearful of her rejection.But being his best friend, he felt he could confide to me about the woman he loved. I tried to make him understand this love story will not have a happy ending. She was all wrong for him.
She was not his perfect match. But he refused to listen.“Arjun, sometimes you can't choose who you loved," he said."Love is just happened."I kept telling him that what he felt for her was merely a crush and with time he will learn to forget her and fall in love with a different woman... a woman less older... a woman that is not wrong for him.
“Arjun,” he retorted, “Only teenagers have crushes, and I am not a teenager anymore!”He was right.
We were not teenagers anymore. Both of us had justturned 25. He just can't forget her. He loved her to the point ofmadness."I can’t tell you the exact moment when I fell in love with her,” he said.
"Maybe I loved her since my last birth. We were lovers in our last life. In this life, fate has cruelly separated us.”Prakash sounded like a character in a bad romance novel. I really believed that time will cure his obsessions and he would learn to forget her. It appeared that I had underestimated his obsession.
I also knew that she wouldn’t have agreed to be his lover. If she had learnt about his love and his obsession, she would have kept her distances. Her heart belonged to a man that she married more than 25 years ago.He died in car crash after ten years of their marriage. They were the most romantic couple I have ever known.
Her friends constantly urged her to get married again."In this lifetime, my heart only belongs to one man,” she replied each time the subject was brought up.She would not let any other man replaced her dead husband's place in her heart. Naturally, Prakash suppressed his true feelings.
He never wanted his love to frighten her... to give her reasons to be angry with him.He preferred to live with the disappointment of not having her as his lover. But in the end, the disappointment was too much for him to bear.
The lady of his dream attended his funeral with tears flooding from her eyes. I can’t deny that she had loved and cared for Prakash. But not in the way Prakash had hoped. Prakash wanted more ... much more.
Like everyone, she was puzzled that Prakash had taken his own life. Days after his funeral, she came to see me. We had intense discussion about Prakash. From me, she hoped she could learn the reason for his suicide, but I didn’t have the heart to tell her the truth. So I lied.I pretended to be like all the others and be totally clueless over the reason for his suicide. After all, she had enough grief to bear and I certainly didn’t want to add guilt to her grief.
I really believe the greatest tragedy any parent can face is when their children die before them. And she had been faced with this tragedy. I would not to add more pain to her tragedy.I wouldn’t want her to feel responsible for driving her own son, Prakash, to suicide. Some truths are not meant to be told and some lies are necessary.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

All about My Father

All about My Father By Bissme S

Love is not enough to keep my mother happy. My father failed to understand that. He was utterly shocked when she wanted to end their marriage.
“Do not leave me…I will change… I will become a better man… I will change… I will change,” my father kept begging my mother.
Truly, there was nothing to change. There was nothing wrong with my father. He had been a great father, a great husband and a great lover. He had showered my mother with love, laughter and happiness.
Most women would die to have a man like my father as their husbands. But my mother was not like most women. She wanted more out of life. Simple happiness is not for everyone.

The first time my parents met was in a college. My father was studying to be a chef while my mother was grooming to be a painter. For my father, it was love at first sight. But love had no place in her life.
My mother wanted to be a painter to that is respected, admired and emulated. She wanted to be best in the world of arts. And my mother believes, to be the best, you need to put a total commitment to your craft… You need to make some sacrifices… You cannot have time for love.
She wanted to dedicate her life to arts and nothing must distract her from her goal. Especially love. She had seen thousand women given up their dreams in the name of love. They ended in an apron and making cookies for their husbands and children. My mother determined that she was not going be one of those women.
My mother send back all my father‘s love letters, unopened. All his gifts ended up in a dustbin. All his dinner offers met with rejection. But nothing my mother did could dissuade my father. He was determined to win my mother’s love…he was determined to make her as his wife….he was determined to make her the mother of his children.
My mother found his determination to be appealing, attractive and extremely sexy. In the end, my mother gave in to temptation of love and allowed my father to dance into her heart. It was the biggest mistake my mother did in her life. My mother should have stayed away from my father. My mother should have stayed away love. My mother should have known that some women are not made for love.

My grandmother hated all the men my mother had dated. She never stopped finding faults in them. No one was good enough for her darling daughter. But the scenario was totally different with my father. They immediately shared a close rapport. They can talk for hours. She wanted him as her son-in-law.
“I can see in his eyes, he is madly in love with you,” my grandmother told my mother. “Marry him and you will be very happy. The greatest happiness in life is to love and be loved. ”
Foolishly, my mother trusted her every word. My mother should have learned that mothers are not always right and some women are not made for love.

It cannot be denied my father and I had brought joy into her life. But the joy was not enough to satisfy her. She constantly felt restless like a vampire who has runs out of her blood supply. The mediocrity of our lives was choking her to death. My mother was like a volcano of frustration that was waiting to erupt.
Her career as a painter had not reached to greater heights the way she had hoped for. She was not as famous as she dreamt to be. That has builds a lot of frustrations and disappointment in her. She had won awards. The media had covered her intensively. She had successful art exhibitions. But that was not enough. She had bigger dreams.
She wanted her works to be exhibited in New York art museums. She wanted to be in the covers of foreign art magazine. She wanted to appear in international talk shows. In short and simple, she wanted greatness. And greatness has not come knocking at her door.
“This country doesn’t appreciate talent,” my mother said.
“As long as you have no money, you won’t get anywhere in this stupid country.”
My father had failed to see the frustration dancing in my mother’s soul. Men can’t never fully understand what goes on in a woman’s heart. But I was a woman. And seeing frustration dancing in someone’s soul can be an unpleasant affair.

God was kind to my mother. God didn’t want her to die as a frustrated woman. God send Eliot Gold into my mother’s life. Eliot Gold was my mother’s ticket to the life she wanted, a life of greatness. Eliot Gold was an insurance man who had built a business empire that worth millions.
First, he was attracted to my mother’s art works. But once he met my mother, he loved the painter more. He wanted my mother at all cost. When a rich man goes hunting, he rarely returned home, empty handed.
My mother was not in love at Eliot Gold but his wealth was difficult to resist. She knew Eliot Gold could be the genie that fulfilled all her dreams. And more than anything else in the world, she wanted her dreams.
In all her life, my mother had loved one man and that man happens to be my father. But not all love stories should have a happy ending.


With Eliot Gold’s wealth and powerful connections, my mother left no stones unturned. She used every opportunity to make all her dreams come true. She wanted greatness. She went out there in full force, grabbed greatness by its neck and never let greatness slipped from her hand.
She had several successful art exhibitions in America and all over Europe. She was featured in many prestigious art magazines. She was labeled as the Frida Kahlo of the East. Indeed when you have money and power at your finger tips, you can even make the most ridiculous dreams come true. And my mother dreams were far from ridiculous. She was no longer a volcano of frustration. Life was a bed of roses for my mother.
But it was totally different scenario with my father. My father became a tortured soul. He can’t stop loving my mother. He was obsessed in getting back the wife that he had lost.
“Annabel, I will get back your mum and we will be one big happy family,” he told me.
My father sent countless love letters to my mother, begging her to come back to him. My father had succeeded in winning my mother’s heart in college and he believed he will succeed again. But my father had forgotten my mother is not the same women any more. My mother had not allowed love to rule her heart any more. All my father’s letters were returned to him, unopened.
“Your mother wants so much of money and I will get her the money she wants,” he said to me.
“I will become richer that bastard who stole your mom away from me.”
Soon enough, his house was flooded with self help books that were supposed to make my father, a millionaire. Amazingly, none of the self help books worked. My father died almost penniless, and with a broken heart

More than a year has passed. My father had no choice but to face the bitter fact he has lost the woman he loved forever. It was a lost that drove him mad… It was a lost that he cannot digest…. It was a lost that brought him so much misery. And one evening he decided to end his misery. My father went to the nearest railway track. He got undressed. Completely naked, he ran towards a moving train.

When my mother first heard about my father’s death, she was devastated. She spends most of her time in bed, with tears streaming down from her eyes. But with time my mother learned to cope with her sadness… She learned to forgive herself… She learned there is a price for everything and nothing in life comes free. The price for her success is that she has droved the man she loved to his death.
Her greatest fear now is that I would hate her. I would blame her for my father’s death. Most mothers do not want their children to hate her and my mother was no different.
Truly, my mother has nothing to worry. I do not hate her. I do not blame her. If she didn’t want my father as her husband, I didn’t want my father as my father. I wanted a man like Eliot Gold as my father. Like my mother, I wanted a life where all my dreams come true and only men like Eliot Gold can give me the life I wanted. All my father can give me is love. But love is not enough to keep me happy …

The End