Dear Love,

Happy Rakhi! After you, the festival lost it’s meaning, so I stopped celebrating but two of my brothers always remember. I received an envelope yesterday with ‘open sesame’ to my softer side written on it. ‘Happy Rakhi Diyu’ it said. Today my youngest brother, sent a message. It’s touching how he never forgets. You remember celebrating rakhi at their house in Janpath? I would tie a Rakhi to him and the two sisters to you. Though, the childhood friendship doesn’t exist anymore, the rakhis have maintained a bond between us.

Every year I think this is the year, I will celebrate. But I can’t imagine dressing up and not having you there to tie it to you first. Just like I can’t imagine getting dolled up for my wedding and not having you and mum by my side. The grapevine, is buzzing with the contrary, though. Word on the street is ‘kuddi ghar jawayee lane walli he!’ This theory came from some random conversations I was having about, sons and daughters and sometimes even if someone has a son, the daughters need to take care of the parents. Like, in the case of our neighbours, in hemkunt and in Masjid moth, where the SIl’s lived with the girl’s parents.

The first time I said it, I didn’t imagine, the person would apply the theory that I was planning to do the same. Preceding it, SB, realised what people would think and she still continued. It has spread like wildfire. But it’s better than the story that I am eloping with someone. Don’t you think they are underestimating, how commitment phobic one really is? Earlier, marriage was the next step, I had to take. Now, even the first step; getting into a relationship seems so tedious. Of course when one is really happy or terribly sad, one does long for someone. But honestly, for those thirty days in a year, why the fuck would I to deal with all the drama, that I’m incapable of having a relationship, without?

Plus, thanks to you bailing on me asshole, I have too many other things on my mind. The workers are feeling a little insecure that we might shut shop. One of them said to me the other day, ‘ Didi, aap socho aap logo ke wajeh se 25-30 ghar hummare chalte he. Aur jahan material jaata he unke bhi chalte he. Agar aap band karoge to sabh ko problem hoge!’ You know, how people are. They keep trying to convince the Father, about the ‘right thing’ to do. Sometimes, it’s about getting a male heir, sometimes it’s shutting shop. People play on insecurities and that he and I have plenty of, at this point. Funnily, enough, my photography, which for the past two decades all of them have had plenty to say against, they are suddenly all very supportive off. Just concentrate on that, I’m told. How much they are thinking about what is right for us, must be quite evident to you, na?

As long as I’m around, I promised you, the father will never have to make a decision, based on the fact that he lost you. Whether, it’s running the business or keeping the house, as it is. So, if that requires me to alter a few things, I will. You know me, you know, come hell or high water I always do what I’m most passionate about. But you do know that, I keep a lot of balls in the air at the same time. They don’t know that but that’s okay. They can keep imagining my life and my dreams are going be limited to a man.