It is said that life has gifts and surprises for everyone. In my life, my father has been my gift...
At age of 3, I lost my biological father to cardiac failure. My mother was a beautiful young woman with two toddlers to look after. Being a single mother, it was difficult for her to work as well as look after the needs of two growing girls.
Five years later, when I was 8, one day my mom asked me and my sister: "Babu, would you not like your mom dressing up well again and getting the opportunity to celebrate things?" After a pause she said, "Would you like your mom to be able to wear gajra, bindi, churi again?" She asked us even though we were little - she did not take the decision of marrying again on her own.
Also read: #MyStory: How I Found Mr Right In My Arranged Marriage Match!
Mom had a childhood neighbour - a friend who used to like her a lot. From the time Mom was a little girl, she used to go to this neighbour's house for chips and biscuits and was friends with his sister. He always used to look at her, but never talked to her. Only when they reached the age of marriage did he ask my grandpa for my mom's hand in marriage. Grandpa being a person with traditional values, and coming from a South Indian family while the guy was Marathi, he refused the proposal.
The guy did not force the issue, neither did he ask my mom even once if she liked him. He respected my grandpa’s decision and went his own way, deciding not to marry. It was 6 years from then that he got in touch with my mom. He had not talked or even had news about mom all this time, but when he came to know that my Pa was no more and my mom was alone, taking care of two young girls, he immediately came back. This time, he asked my mom directly about marriage. Mom refused.
He waited for 5 long years and tried to convince my mom. And it was only after those long years of loneliness and being a single mother that my mom agreed to marry him...because she too fell in love with him.
My mom made my dad wait for 18-19 years. From the time he fell in love with her even as teenagers to the time when my grandpa refused him because of the difference in caste, to the time my mom refused him worrying about what society would think...to finally falling in love!
All I can say is, I’m glad it finally happened. My dad is the best gift that we could have ever asked for. He loves both me and my sister and has never made us or society feel that there is some disconnect. Whatever we wanted - rather, whatever was essential - we received before asking. All our tantrums were taken care of. Lectures on what to do, what not to do were given. Basically, he did everything a “real” father would do. :-)
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Many a time, I hear people say step-parents are very bad and people with children should not go for a second marriage. I don’t agree with them at all. But maybe we are lucky enough to be special to God to be blessed with such a great father. No one can say that he is not our father because he is the only father we know from the time we were able to understand the world, and we love him.
My dad, my hero.
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Published on Aug 08, 2016