100 Days of Confinement
It was the 10th day after his mother’s death. Arjun was gathering her belongings, and he found a Diary he had never seen before. Only a few pages were written on. Arjun was surprised, his mother shared everything with him, it was always him and her and they had no secrets. He knew everything about her, so his not knowing about the dairy was almost a shock. He opened the pages and began to read what his mother had written.
Hi Diary, its strange that my new diary begins with a new beginning.
We met for the first time today. He spoke so much, going on and on about what a good Samaritan he is. I listened. He never tried to know me or ask me anything at all except my phone number. After he left, I was not sure but Mom and Dad are confident that he is the right one, so I said yes.
He called me today. We spoke for an hour, he went on and on. He said he never spoke to anyone on the phone for more than five minutes. I was happy at that statement and felt elated, I thought let that I would get my chance to speak later. He also mentioned spending a lot of money on clothes. Well I don’t spend that much in six months and he spent it in a day. Strange.
I will see the house that is going to be mine for the first time. It is smaller than I thought it would be, but that doesn’t matter, does it. Its the people that matter. So when people asked me the question did I like the house I said yes.
The engagement is going to happen in two days and we are going Ring shopping. After searching the whole day we settle on two, he selected the biggest possible ring for him and the smallest one for me, saying anything bigger wont suit me. Also, he says he liked simple things.
I got engaged today. People were shocked to see such a small ring knowing how much I like diamonds. I said I like simple things, especially because I am never taking off the ring. We took the required posy photos, though I don’t like posing much. All in all the event was a success. Also, the wedding date is set for 15 days from now.
Today we began the shopping. Its going to be hectic.I wonder will it be strange to marry a man within 25 days of meeting him. Anyway Shopping, something I am really not looking forward to – I hate shopping. Strangely he says he wont shop now, he will when his sister comes. I wondered isn’t she coming 5 days before the wedding.
She came today, his sister, got a gift for me. A laptop, seemed a bit older than what I was using, but it was a gift with love so accepted it. She also did not ask about me, she just went on and on about her shopping. I asked her what is she doing for her brother’s shopping she said, well that is not my problem. Strange, wasn’t he waiting for her to come. Anyway we finalized the menu for all the functions today.
He called me up late in the night to change the menu. Apparently the people in his house don’t eat Pav Bhaji and chaat. Well dad called up the caterer and asked him to add rice, dal, roti and subzi to the menu.
It was the sangeet today, but my mother in law (I already call her Mummy) fell sick. So we had to stop the function mid way. She seemed to be fine though. What a relief. Also the caterer told us that the things added to the menu yesterday went untouched.
Day 25 – 30:
Well I am writing this on day 30, and have so much to say. No its really nothing like you imagined. On our wedding day, Mummy fell sick again. So, there was a frown on everyone’s face. He told me that he cancelled the wedding but his mother gave him “her promise” and so the wedding is happening thanks to that. So the wedding done, a room was booked in a five star hotel for us by my family. Actually they still haven’t paid for the wedding expenditure. After a tiring day all I could think of was sleep, but then it happened. The man I was married to changed into a monster, and forced himself upon me. I wanted to scream in pain, to ask him to stop but words, left me and my silent screams were only for me to hear. I was shocked and scared, I had not known what to expect, but this was surely not what I had in mind.
Anyway the next day we went home, I had expected the extended family to be there to greet me, Imagine my surprise when there was no one. even his sister wasn’t there, she had to go shopping as she was leaving in three days. I emptied my bags under Mummy’s scrutiny and she picked up what she liked.
We went to my parents place and collected the gifts the next day. He took the cash from me, said he will keep it safe in his account till I get mine. The next day he came with tickets to Goa for our honeymoon. I had opened a bank account and asked him for the money, he said he spent it on our Honeymoon. Strange that he did not feel the need to ask me about my things, but then weren’t the things ours. Also, he had none of the documents/proof required for the marriage certificate. I began crying, not because I was sad, I felt helpless and stuck somewhere I did not want to be. Somehow next day his document appeared, I wonder how he got them.
At nights and when we are alone my husband turns into a monster. Its like he enjoys hurting me.
We are back from our honeymoon and I have returned with more bruises than happy memories. It was worse cause his parents could not hear us. I returned today to find mummy showing off all my jewelry to her friends. I need to get the bank locker tomorrow.
I took a pregnancy test, and it was positive. I did not want this so early, and had begged to use preventive measures, but none appealed to him. When I told him that he was going to be a father, he replied by saying, ”You are now trapped, and cannot escape this confinement.” I believe him.
His behavior has changed for the past few days. I was right, it required just time. We both needed this time to adjust. Anyway he came to me saying that he needed some money for some urgent work and could I ask my father for that. He promised he would return it withing a few days. I got it for him.
He asked for more money today. I was embarrassed to ask my father and I told him so, he slapped me. and then asked me again, I defiantly said no. Mummy came in running and said she is pregnant, you have to do it carefully, and she showed him how. I was battered and eventually fell unconscious on the floor. Now I feel better haven’t had anything to eat yet.
I have finally realized what a fool I have been from day one. I should have listened to my instinct and backed away every chance I got. I felt so small and unimportant all through this ordeal. I The past ten days have only been full of more and more torture.
But, I have to escape this for the sake of the life I carry within me. I want it to be safe. He thinks I am weak and I cant go anywhere. But I will leave, I will create a new hope for my child. This baby will not be born in captivity, nor will carry the burden of being captive. This book I will keep as a reminder of my 100 days of confinement, but it will be just my load to carry. Tomorrow will bring a new hope and freedom.
When Arjun finished, he had tears in his eyes. He knew the story, but to read it from his Mother’s perspective with all the gruesome details. Now he knew why she never used ths diary again, she did not want to start her new life with images of confinement. Arjun picked up the diary and kept it his mother’s ashes. He knew she would want to take that piece of confinement with her and not bind anyone with it.