The past me isn’t embarrassing anymore

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TW: I had a very happy childhood. My parents were my favorite couple and always made me believe in love. I got married at the age of 30. My marriage was arranged by my parents. My husband had his own business. After my marriage, during the first 5 months, my husband was the most caring person.

But it all changed one day. I came home late from my office that day. After reaching home I saw my husband’s angry face. I tried to calm him down but as I was talking he suddenly slapped me. I was too shocked to react. He went to our room and slept. I remember the day; I sat on our balcony and cried the whole night. The next morning, I woke up to my husband cooking breakfast. It was his way of saying sorry. I forgave him that day. It was my first mistake.

Everything was going well in the early days of our marriage. After a few months after the incident, my husband faced a big loss in his business. He started to drink heavily and he started to come home late drunk. One day, while he was having his breakfast, I asked him if he needed any help. I assured him that I was there for him. I remember him throwing away his plate to the ground. I remember him getting up from his chair. I remember the sound of a slap. I remember waking up from the floor. Little did I realize; he had slapped me so hard that I fainted. He had left me where I had fallen on the floor.

I went to my parent’s house immediately and told them about everything. What shocked me was that my parents asked me to compromise. They told me fighting is a part of every marriage. I had to be an understanding wife. It was my duty. That day, I realized I had to handle my battle all alone and I was too shocked to see that my parents did not stand for me. I came home and called my in-laws. They too replied in the same manner. No one was ready to help. At that point, I thought maybe they were right. I was overthinking and it is a women’s prerogative to adjust in a marriage.

Within a few months, my husband was back on his feet. He got a good profit in his business. He stopped drinking. I was relieved to know that everything was back to normal. I soon got to know I was pregnant. I was overjoyed by the news. But I noticed that my husband was not so happy with the news. For my husband, it was the worst moment. A few days later, he screamed at me and told me that the baby was unwelcome. The baby was an extra expense he cannot afford. I was deeply hurt. I was yearning for a child for a long time and I asked him not to say such things. I told him that we will manage our lives to accommodate this young one but he once again lost his cool and become violent. I remember him bringing the kerosene bottle and matchbox. He told me he will kill me at that very moment. I remember screaming for help. That day, our neighbors protected me. I mentally made a resolution that I cannot stay with this man I call my husband.

After 5 months, I got a divorce from my husband. My parents and my in-laws were not happy with my decision. My parents clearly said I am not their responsibility anymore. I had come to a dead-end. Nothing could stop me from taking this decision. I took a small room for rent.

Stress during pregnancy and after childbirth is said to increase one’s risk of mental illness and here, I was depressed and not eating. I was crying incessantly and one day I walked into the clinic. The gynecologist saw my condition and referred me to the mental health clinic. I was shocked at the same time angry with my husband, because of him I was in this situation. I was a strong person from childhood and here I was standing in front of my gynecologist as a helpless, faceless individual. After 2 months I gave birth to my Tara. She was underweight at birth. I felt all the more sadder that my Tara was underweight and I went into self-guilt.

I had enough. I decided to join therapy. I realized postpartum depression is an illness and it needs to be treated. I needed help. I make a commitment to myself to work on myself with the help of the therapist. In a month’s time, I started feeling better and, in a year, I was back on my feet. I got a promotion at my job. I saved some money every day and I built my life little by little. My focus was on providing a safe and secure attachment with my child. I have learned to smile with Tara and I have learned from my therapist that I have reason to smile. It is not just Tara that is the reason to smile, it is me that I should be smiling and loving. I am taking care of myself and that love flows into Tara. She is my second love; my first love is myself. The past me is my best textbook of mine and I am learning and growing every day.

( Permission is taken from the person )

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