Updated: Sep 10, 2020
Story By: Meetali Asiwal
My mother was my age when I was born -her fourth child, and yet the eldest. Surprising, interesting, true.
There are a lot of surprising, interesting, true facts that constitute the life of my mother -about that imperfect, beautiful lady whom my father brought home, alone. Note that alone here doesn't mean without any human circle, for there was the whole Baarat of more than hundred people accompanying her. Here alone means without any material protection that might have saved my mother against the verbal and physical violence of her in-laws. Here alone means without any dowry - as my grandpa failed to keep his promises at the time of the marriage. A failure which has devoid me of my maternal relatives until now.
Anyhow, I was describing the surprising, interesting, true phenomenon of I being the fourth child, and yet the eldest. Yes, it's possible for those who are unfortunate enough.
The tender age in which my mother gave birth to her first child (a girl), became the reason of her death. "The bride is not strong enough to feed the child properly", said the doctors. "The bride is not attentive enough to take care of the child properly", interpreted the in-laws.
The second girl died in the womb itself, and my grandma clicked her tongue calling my mother a witch, eating off her own children. The third time it wasn't the witch but a girls-hating monster who ate the third child -also a girl -of my mother.
Unfortunately, I was born at the time when the atrocities of the monster had made my mother strong, and I survived. My gift of survival was the monster, who hated me, and whom I had to call "father" for the whole life.
After me were born two more daughters, not out of love, but out of hope mixed with hatred and regret. Hope, from the side of my father of having a son this time. Hatred and regret, from the side of my mother of marrying and marrying in the family of monsters.
That's how I became the fourth, the eldest, the strongest, and the first to start a series of survival.