When I say proposals, I do mean proposals in plural.
It’s been months since my 20 year old sister broke up with her first ever boyfriend of 2 years. There was a lot of confusion, feelings of betrayal, and hopefully recovery as well. However, I assumed it was at a whim when my sister told my mother soon after the break up to allow the phone calls of arranged marriage proposal to roll in.
The thing is, in our parents cultures, match making would happen by relatives or anyone the family would know. When they would hear of either an eligible man or woman that was ready to get married, they would be like “Oh my god, I know someone that’s also looking for someone to get married to,” and poof. The middle man would help connect the two families and they would meet and decided if they want to get married or not.
However, these proposals literally come from everywhere or anyone to be honest. Someone you may have talked to only once in your life may just ring you up one day with a proposal.
I hated it. Not that I don’t respect it if one chooses that’s how they want to get married, but the idea of having so many people being part of something that’s so personal, kind of made my skin crawl.
So, as I got older, it soon began to be more clear to me that the thought of marriage didn’t give me butterflies in my stomach. I am still young and have a decade till getting married but that idea soon changed when my pretty much young sister (only 2 1/2 years older than me) asked my mother to spread the word for the old traditional way of getting married.
It would be a lie if I said I wasn’t shocked. It’s not the idea of wanting to get married young. It was because my sister and I were both greatly affected with witnessing firsthand our parents more than unhappy marriage while growing up. When we were younger it was assumed that my sister would be alone forever and I would get in relationships a lot because I was the more emotional and affectionate sister.
Then we grew up and the complete opposite happened. I ran away from relationships and my sister ran towards them. But you could tell that my sisters way of preventing what happened to our mother to happening her was finding a boyfriend that was the complete opposite of our father. In other words, my sister was the dominant and man in the relationship while her boyfriend was the emotional and clingy one.
That being said, knowing my sisters strong personality when she asked such a request, despite what we’ve gone through, surprised me. She wasn’t reluctant of marriage, unlike me, but rather seemed to want to face it head on.
So the day before, I heard of one of those proposes that we’re coming in. At the time I was reading posts of blogs I followed and at the side of my peripheral vision I saw my mother approach me with a slight smile.
I was curious…till she slowly began explaining to me the phone call my father was on right at that moment.
The way I reacted caught my mother and I off guard. I always like knowing whats going on in my sisters life but this was the first time I stopped her.
“I don’t want any part of it.” I honestly didn’t want to hear anything. Usually my curiosity would win but this time it didn’t…I didn’t only not want to know, I also didn’t want to care.
I was always the romantic and love obsessed one but despite that, I didn’t want any part of it. Is it because I want love but not marriage? Or is it that I don’t want either, content with just dreaming about it? Maybe it’s for the saying my parents culture has, a daughter often lives her mothers life.
I truly love my mother…but I also fear the life she’s lived. And marriage proposals were the beginning of her sad story.