My throat was constricted and unshed tears stung my eyes as I held the white piece of paper in my hands. My world was smashed to smithereens and I was trembling with disgust. All the anger, frustration and agony melted away in few minutes. I could sense darkness all around and suddenly the happenings of past few months flashed in front of my eyes.
I was married to Rahul for eight years. Pari was born in second year of our marriage, life changed since then. I had to join back work when Pari turned eight months. Sustaining a decent life in a metro city was not easy so I had to leave Pari in the care of her nani. Rahul was working as a middle level manager in an MNC in Delhi, his job was demanding and he always rushed off his feet. Meeting deadlines and targets always kept him as busy as a beaver.
I and Rahul had different working hours in our offices. I left for office early and returned early. Despite being exhausted after a hectic day, I always liked to spend the evening time with Pari. I was neck deep in mommy guilt that I was unable to spend time with my daughter, my heart was always full of gratitude for my mother who was the best nani in the world. Pari was more attached to her nani and use to be happy and comfortable in her company.
In all this, I and Rahul were drifting apart from each other. We were just leading our lives to make ends meet, the emotional bonding was waning. It was a relationship of convenience for us and the apathy towards each other was earnestly bizarre. Weekends were engulfed in arguments and bickering over trivial issues which resulted in disturbing quietude. Two estranged people living under the same roof but without any equation, both were always ready with a quiver full of sarcastic remarks to shoot at each other. Life was just moving on at its own pace.
Once in the middle of the night he complained of mild abdomen pain and uneasiness which was ignored by me as I took it as a normal acidity issue. After few days Rahul started feeling uneasy and nauseated most of the times. One day after having his dinner he threw away the food with stains of blood, this took the situation to the brim. Next day we went to a famous doctor in a private hospital, the following two weeks were spent in getting all medical tests and diagnosis done. First time I could sense something untoward approaching us.
Rahul, my husband and life partner, was diagnosed with Cancer of Stomach. We hugged each other tightly in the hospital foyer and cried, the diagnosis changed all the contours of our future relationship. My head hangs in shame when I see that it took me so many years to realise my true love and feelings for my husband. Our finances have taken a sharp downturn but love has increased manifold. All elements of my life are same still the whole emotional landscape has changed. Sadly, the realisation occurred after the diagnosis of this malignancy. We always say that ‘time flies ‘ but I am painfully experiencing it every day. Now I am just trying to conserve memories of each moment I spent with him.
He is undergoing the first cycle of Chemotherapy right now and responding well to it. There is still a glimmer of hope in my heart that Rahul will never leave us alone.
I want to sincerely request all married couples that cherish each moment of togetherness and count your blessings. Time and tide wait for none, you never know what surprise the next moment holds for you, sometimes life doesn’t give a chance to even repent.
(This short story is a piece of fiction. Please share your views in the comment box below )