Am I Not Worth It Anymore?
Am I Not Worth It Anymore?
Radhika let out a sigh as a grumpy Sushant left home with the kids. He didn’t even care to look back at her or say a formal bye. Had she woken up a bit early, he wouldn’t have had to rush immediately and they wouldn’t have had their stupid fight. Nowadays, they fought and argued more than often. Why did she have to watch that movie late at night? It wasn’t even that great. Due to her carelessness and lazy attitude, her kids had missed their school bus and Sushant had to drop them off to school way before his usual time. Not to forget the rantings she had heard from her kids and Sushant since morning.
As she collected her thoughts and cursed herself, she glanced at her reflection in her bedroom mirror. Apart from the dark circles, the swollen eyes and a few extra pounds she had gained in the last few years; nothing much had changed about her. Her hair was uncombed and she was still in her night dress. She still looked beautiful; even though she said so herself. A few stares here and there was something she could still manage to get from both sexes, despite being the mother of 2 teenagers. Sushant had fallen in love with her at first sight at his best friend’s wedding. A reserved man by nature, he made a few attempts to impress her on a number of ocassions but she ignored him completely.
So he did what any sensible man would do next. Send his parents with a marriage proposal at her doorstep which Radhika wasn’t quite keen on. She felt that she and Sushant were drastically different in all spheres of life. She was fire and he was ice. Nonetheless, he belonged to an upper middle class but conservative family. They would never accept or welcome a girl who wore her heart on her sleeve. Despite Radhika’s hesitance, her parents had liked Sushant from day one. A few days of convincing and a few unconventional meetings with him made her change her mind. After marriage, she agreed to give up her career and shifted her focus only towards family. The struggle wasn’t easy, but she had managed it all with her loving husband by her side.
Radhika let out a laugh as she vaguely remembered one of Sushant’s relative’s words. “ You are too modern for our family.” Fact to be noted: it was true back then as it was now. But Sushant had never made her feel so. Neither did his parents. Even though they’d had their shares of difference of opinion on her children’s upbringing, both parties used the ideology of forgive and forget not letting it affect their relationship. It was strange how quick the last sixteen years had passed. She had been everything but a demure bride, too bold for her husband’s standards. But he had accepted her wholeheartedly the way she was and loved her unconditionally. For him, she changed herself willingly. At least, she thought she did. Today, she still felt guilty for not being on her best behavior with him initially, failing to discover his heart of gold behind his standoffish appearance.
Their marriage had been one hell of a roller coaster ride, with their lovey-dovey moments and fair share of arguments. After suffering two miscarriages, Radhika was advised bed rest during the birth of her twins. Sushant did all the cooking and cleaning for her during those 9 months without any complaints and even helped her in changing the kids’ diapers much later. Even though the poor chap had no idea whatsoever, he still tried. And then there were moments when he would blast all his office frustration on her or complain about his sabzi not being cooked properly.
During the first few years of their marriage, Sushant ate whatever she gave him. Whether the food was properly cooked or not, he ate it without any noise. If someone had asked Radhika to be a housewife twenty years ago, she would have just puked at the idea. Luckily, she managed to surprise herself as well as her parents. She learnt to cook, clean and stitch for him and her children, something which she hadn’t even attempted as a bachelorette. If it weren’t for his love and support, she wouldn’t have survived even a single day. So what had changed now? Did he not love her anymore? Why did he have to yell at her in front of the kids?
Agreed, it was her mistake. Some of Sushant’s words had hurt Radhika immensely. This time, the kids had supported their father; blaming her for her irresponsibility and failing to live up to their expectations. What gave them the right to speak to her in such a fashion? She was a human being and not a machine. Mistakes were bound to happen. Why were things different now than they were a few years back? Nowadays, Sushant complained about everything she did. No matter the efforts, he was never satisfied. It was as if he was purposely trying to find faults in her. Their conversations were restricted to the kids and the kids alone. Had he lost interest in her? Was she not worth it anymore?
Or he had been too preoccupied with work and other commitments to even bother about her feelings. Questions and questions flooded her mind as she tried to keep herself busy with household work, wondering what had gone wrong in the past few months. Radhika didn’t call Sushant to check up on him and neither did he. When the kids returned home from school, they apologized, making her feel a little better but there was still no sign of their father. No phone call and no message all day. Perhaps he was still angry or genuinely not interested in reconciling.
When he returned home, his behavior was just the same. Sushant avoided her as much as possible; by watching TV or communicating with the kids. They tried their best to involve both parents in their chit-chat but to no avail. Dinner time was the quietest it had ever been in the last 16 years. Radhika would have loved it if he atleast argued with her. But he chose to remain silent and she hated him for doing so. After dinner, her bed was the only ray of hope left for her, even if it wasn’t as per her regular time.
As she reached the bedside table, her eyes fell on a box with a note underneath it. She placed the box on the bed and quickly read the note. The note said: ‘ Sorry darling. For today and for every second that I have hurt you. You know what? I still love you. Happy Anniversary in advance. Even though it is just two hours away.’
In the box, was a diamond ring. The one she had always wanted. Radhika leaped up with joy but her eyes were moist. Sushant stood at their bedroom door with his hands folded; lips curved into a smile. So that’s what this drama was for? He had always been bad at communicating. An apology was all she had wanted. This was completely out of the box. How could she forget that their anniversary was just a day away? Before she could vent out her emotions, their kids barged in, shouting on the top of their voice.
“ Happy anniversary , Mom and Dad.” In that one moment, Radhika realized that she had wasted an entire day cribbing over an issue which didn’t exist in the first place. She was definitely worth it and much more than she could ever imagine.