Rambling heart


Sometimes the heart is filled with mixed emotions. Just that.

Is it wrong to have a good trusting heart? Why is it that people try to smother you the moment they find you vulnerable or naive? Is not friendship/ love or for that matter any relationship about giving space?

Sometimes one has to let go even after knowing that the person means well. Relationships blossom only when there is a flow in them, like a river. When you try to lead someone’s life for him/her then it begins to wither. We all try to control the other person all the time but the moment someone does it to us we rebel.

Sometime the best thing to do is quietly let go and move on. You can’t force a flower to bloom. To know when to go away and when to come closer is the key to any lasting relationship.

Yesterday all the young adults were at home. It warmed my heart to see how these kids have grown up to be such wonderful human beings. It wasn’t long ago when they trotted all over the house wearing diapers .  It’s amazing  how one of them has started earning, another  crossed his teens today and the little ones are not so little anymore.  We saw their baby pictures and read the small little notes and letters they had written . The beautiful drawings that those little artists made brought back so many memories.

Today is my firstborn’s twentieth birthday. Strange that when one beautiful relationship was blossoming another was crumbling like a house of cards. Sometimes I wonder what is this strange relationship I share with my boys. They are my sons, best friends, confidante and much more.  There is a much deeper bond that connects us where age is no bar. I think despite of  all the blows that life gave the journey was one hell of a crazy fun trip with both.  Trust me raising two brats is not for weak hearted. I have had my share of tears and laughter.  You can browse through all the  posts about my mind-blowing brats and me Here  

Talking of relationships reminds me of some very beautiful ones that I share with some very precious people in my life. Some are just memories as either the other person is no more or they have moved on to different cities and different arms but the warmth remains.

My father was a very special person. We shared a great friendship and I accepted him with all his follies. Who are we to judge but Yes, I raised my voice against what I felt was wrong.  We argued, discussed, laughed off something, got pissed off at others but the bond strengthened with each day. I sometime wonder what makes a relationship click ? Maybe it is the similarities or maybe it is the differences. I know that it is acceptance of both that makes some strong but then why do some of them crumble? We are forgiving in one relationship and so very unforgiving in another?

I guess it is question of how deep is the hurt. When the hurt penetrates deeper into the crevices of heart it is difficult to nurture a bond. The heartstrings lose the elasticity, they break .  All one can do is forgive and move on. We learn from past relationships, we learn all the time, every moment teaches us something one just needs to be aware. I have realized we can either make it  bitter or better.  I want to bring out the nectar from the poison.

I began this post yesterday but these days emotional posts get me down. Today is the festival of light. A time to look within and observe the inner light. To let go of all the hurt, pain and negativity. To Believe and embrace life as it unfolds.

Life enriches in more than one ways. I lost some of the most precious years yearning for love, compassion, dignity and most of all my inner child but today I feel I have come a full circle. I have learned to accept love in any form it comes. To keep my palms open. It is said that it is not standing still that makes the butterfly sit on your palm but the stillness of heart. I am sure I will be able to still my heart from today.

There are people who have warmed and nourished my life . Friends , some virtual other real, who have given me strength to shed the veils, to be myself, to love myself and stand alone again.

Sometimes the heart knows no reasons and goes all out to just Love. Relationships sometimes don’t have names. They just are. It is a feeling beyond words. One just feels blessed. I thank the universe for bringing this joy to me , for all the precious hearts who are connected to mine , for the light that guides me in the form of my mentor , for the immense love and care I receive from someone very special . Distances do not count, nor does someone’s being or not being physically, it is the energy flow that matters. It really does.

I learned one thing in recent years , it is Our heart that sings the unchained melody of love , it doesn’t posses , doesn’t smother .. just loves and sometimes there is a duet sometimes not but the song remains eternally beautiful. It is complex and yet simple. There is a longing and yet there is a free flow. I want it to be like that .. flowing. No one got anything from caging someone. It is in the spaces that love grows. We just need to open our heart petals. I am doing it and am sure the universe will respond.

This is my rambling heart , flowing as a river. Sometimes calm and serene and at others youthful like the mountain spring.

So here is to love, happiness, light and peace

Here is a beautiful song for all of you  and especially for someone who changed the course of my life by just being there unconditionally.

L’amour fau :Two Poems


***************

Insert the knife 
a little deeper 
into the soft flesh my love 
slice the heart 
draw blood
your words
by the way 
are equally effective

****************

Grim Reaper

she shadows me

like a jealous lover

ribbons of darkness

fall over her luring face

her scythe, a sickle moon

against her nocturnal robe

Sometimes in the realms of shadows

I hear her sepulchral whispers

at others she holds me captive

with her ensnaring eyes

She, the harvester of soul

And I

the  harbinger of light

L’amour fau 

*******************

If it hurts it is not love #Violence Against Women Awareness Month #October


She was 23 when she married for “love”. As a girl she felt the lack of  “warmth” even though she wasn’t stereotyped for being born a girl. Caged and distraught by the environment she wanted an escape . Unfortunately that escape to freedom chained her for good, emotional and mental abuse, marital rape, seclusion from social life to an extent, discontent due to financial dependence, emotional blackmail, continuous verbal and emotional onslaught by in-laws and no support from her husband became a way of life with her. For years she “ADJUSTED ” and tried to ” mend the relationships” that actually had lost meaning. It weighed heavily on her mind and reflected in her deteriorating health until one day  she decided to break the shackles and face the consequences .

She knew that however life may treat her it wont be as bad as before. It was time to change, the path she carved for herself was rough but her spirit could not endure more indignity. This is the true story of Tara (name changed). One can ask hundreds of questions about WHY it took her so many years to take that much-needed step especially when she was aware of her rights and educated ( not just literate) . I guess sometimes there are no answers.

One may say , what crap, it is just a question of how badly you want your freedom and dignified life .  Sometimes it is easier said than done. Sometimes it takes more than just courage and will to do what is “right” .

Emotional abuse starts from the time you sense the first sign of contempt, rejection.It starts as birth and continues at every step where ever a girl is restricted, curbed, violated in any form, undermined, ridiculed or is wrapped in the blanket of ( “social sanctions/ moral norms/ duties/codes).

It starts when she is assigned to play roles that of a daughter, sister, wife , mother DIL and much more.

It starts when her own identity is pushed way back and get buried under the “socially accepted” way of life.When Her voice is muted.

In many cases of DV centuries of conditioning, controlling, traumatizes and intimidates the victim and the lack of support system forces her to either isolate herself into acceptance or drives her to take her life.

The deep-rooted sense of “guilt” of being born as a girl, of being “a burden” weighs heavily on her psyche and is continuously nurtured by the society saturated by Misogyny. Violated for “being born ” starts the emotional abuse.

October is VAWAmonth and let me share the  #VAWMonth and #VAWAM you can aslo add your voice HERE  and Here 

Emotional Abuse and marital rape are often not discussed and are pushed under the carpet.Despite the unwillingness to recognise marital rape as a crime, the fact remains that it is prevalent throughout society. Women’s bodies are outraged, regardless of their educational qualifications, class or status.  Even after the outcry and awareness of laws women seldom shed the inhibition and lodge a complaint or simply walk out of such abusive relationship. This is because cultures worldwide discourage their women from openly discussing sexual matters, let alone within marriage. Most women don’t even think of rape by their husbands as marital rape. Sex is considered obligatory and taboo. The bitter medicine called ” being a good wife ” is pushed down the throat of women, the code of conduct set by society;  to serve and never to “wash dirty linen” in public ; forces them to endure the pain, mental/emotional trauma,  sexual dysfunction, physical injuries and much more. { LINK }

It is a myth that only uneducated or rural women are the victims of abuse. I agree that many women are raising a voice against DV and talking that bold and much-needed step to walk out of such abusive marriages but still a lot more is needed to be done. I feel that forcing a girl to marry someone against her wishes or under the pretext of ” we know what’s good for our daughter ”  is also a form of abuse and should be stopped.

What has changed for Indian woman as she enters the second decade of the 21st century ? Violence against women is still widespread and is increasing day by day.

Do women lose human rights after marriage ?

If rape is a crime then why marital rape is still not considered as crime under IPC?

Is it not discriminatory to call an act “an offence”  merely because of the difference in person committing the act?

What is the justification of differentiating between women who are wives and other women as far as the offense of rape and violence goes ?

The 172nd Law Commission report had made the following recommendations for substantial change in the law with regard to rape.

  1. ‘Rape’ should be replaced by the term ‘sexual assault’.
  2. ‘Sexual intercourse as contained in section 375 of IPC should include all forms of penetration such as penile/vaginal, penile/oral, finger/vaginal, finger/anal and object/vaginal.
  3. In the light of Sakshi v. Union of India and Others [2004 (5) SCC 518], ‘sexual assault on any part of the body should be construed as rape.
  4. Rape laws should be made gender neutral as custodial rape of young boys has been neglected by law.
  5. A new offence, namely section 376E with the title ‘unlawful sexual conduct’ should be created.
  6. Section 509 of the IPC was also sought to be amended, providing higher punishment where the offence set out in the said section is committed with sexual intent.
  7. Marital rape: explanation (2) of section 375 of IPC should be deleted. Forced sexual intercourse by a husband with his wife should be treated equally as an offence just as any physical violence by a husband against the wife is treated as an offence. On the same reasoning, section 376 A was to be deleted.
  8. Under the Indian Evidence Act (IEA), when alleged that a victim consented to the sexual act and it is denied, the court shall presume it to be so.
We are still waiting for the change.
I often read this reports and wonder that in a country like ours where minds are governed by skewed traditions, orthodox norms etc, does having a legal provision really help?
The refusal to acknowledge of the extent of violence women suffer within their homes, or the insurmountable hurdles they face when they try to use laws that contradict each other, their implementation and their inefficiency  is something on needs to think about .
There are trillions of reports, articles, cases that one can quote but  an average Indian woman’s story of abuse (Physical/metal/ emotional) continues and those who step out (with exception of few ) find themselves hanging in an abyss due to lack of proper support system.
Tara took some bold steps.
She refused to have any physical relationship with her husband without HER consent.
She refused to be treated like a slave or a property though it stirred a hornets nest in her marital home and created further discord.
She made it clear that she would not be party to any forced ” duty/ order that she is “expected to do / obey” as a DIL / Wife .
She realized that she had not only lost her voice but also her self-esteem and confidence in self. Born in an open-minded, educated family she had never heard or seen such stone age behavior and after giving her best to them and shedding her skin to “Adopt” their ways , she could not bend any further. The man she married in the name of ” love ” gave her wounds which scaled her soul. Being tied to the Apron strings of his mom He could never stand up for her. The  time had come to decided whether to break or to stand up straight and walk out with what ever was remaining. She decided to do the second.
The first reaction she got was ” why after so many years ? It took you more than 20 years to realize that you were being reduced to dust  and you can’t take it ? Well, IT IS NEVER TOO LATE.
After earnest attempts to ” make things work” ( a Utopian dream) , She decided to Give Up and Not Give in . She left.
She is termed as deserter having no respect for “social moral values”. Mental and Emotional violence can extend beyond the  abused when abusers accuse family of girl of”ruining her marriage n keeping her “against” social norms. Her family is labelled as ” conspirators to her foolishness” and looked down upon by in-laws for ” supporting her when her ideal place is in her husband’s home “no matter what” .  Her husband feels she has abandoned her children for some vague notion of ” dignity” fueled by feminists and friends.
The in-laws  feel that if “her wings were chopped timely” she would not have “dared to do” such an outrageous thing but for the sake of society and their heartbroken son  they would shut their mouth and abide by her wishes IF she returns “Home” . Husband agrees.
They feel her it is improper and shameful to act in this fashion. A woman needs to learn to keep everything inside her and “adjust” no questions asked.
She should serve her husband and look after “HIS parents ( not hers of course ) for it is her duty to do so.
Social seclusion is essential because too much mingling with ” advanced women/men”  poisons the mind as in her case.
To keep a woman from going ” astray ‘  she needs to be broken financially so No Job and No Friends esp Males.
Rules, traditions, customs , sanctions , code of conduct , religion , rituals are to be followed without a word.
Mother in law IS  Law .
She has no other identity than her husband so she should be  gracious and be condescending.
All this and more applies because this is not America , this is India and this is in our culture so abide by it.
  TARA Disagreed. 
She was fortunate to have a supporting family and friends who were ready to help But how many women have this considerate,caring system to help them fight the injustice ?
Many women are not living their dreams because they are living their fears.
Isolation, restriction, guilt, humiliation, denial, continuous controlling and criticism, lack of empathy, love, companionship, shattering of a dream of ” a life long relationship based on mutual respect” breaks the victim. Emotional, mental tortured is hard to explain due to lack of  ” solid evidence” .
Emotional Abuse comes silently most of d times camouflaged as “love,betterment,moral duty,guilt,emo.blackmail,marital rape. Silence helps it breed and dig its claws deeper.
In our country ‘thinking’ for oneself is not encouraged. It’s always conformity&herd mentality. The  moment a woman begins to voice her thoughts she is condemned, ridiculed & told to shut up. If she rebels , her condition is even worse.
Does that mean we keep suffering ?
NO, trust me it is better to raise your voice and make your life worthy than suffer and reinforce the fact that women can be used as objects and treated like an old newspaper.
This is not an essay on Domestic violence it is cry of a muted heart which has found its voice .
Related posts : 

Driblets : Lost and Found Poems


and there she stands wearing midnight

my relentless pursuer

waiting to strike again

Death

you underestimate me

*

Looking for something ?

I believe this is your knife ..

you left it in my back .

A word of advice – Be careful with knives they have minds of their own

****

Venus flytrap

hungry hugs

kiss of death

Oh, Please ! your old tricks have lost their sting

try something new

Something more exciting

more challenging

you still underestimate me

*****

The night spilled some of the dark element before plunging into the dawn 

and then came the rain 

riding on the wings of  storm 

 tapping on window panes sighing

 and its  shrill mournful voice 

singing a  requiem  for  the love lost 

sinking its talons in heart 

drawing blood

warm crimson splendor

pulsating with memories

  acerbic brew

death raises a toast 

as the wet bruised sun watches 

from behind the clouds at dusk

**