Adya has been constantly coughing all day, and Arundathi finally managed to feed her 4 spoons of kichdi, but the real challenge was to feed her the medicine next …. after many failed attempts, she succeeds in squeezing in the cough drops in her li’l mouth and put her to bed ..
It was nearing dinner time and Arundathi quickly gets out the bedroom closing the door from outside lightly so that there is no disturbance for her baby and brought the dishes to the sink …
As Arnav, Arundathi ‘s husband had a dinner meeting with his colleagues that night , it was just Arundathi and her in-laws for dinner that night ….
Arundathi served Rotis and sabzi on her mother-in-law and father-in-law ‘s plates and then sat down and served herself too and just then her MIL started speaking ” Arundathi , you are such a careless mother … you don’t know how to take care of your 2year old child ,your mother has not taught you anything !! How did she get cough ? She must have eaten something at your friend’s place yesterday when you took her and you must have not even noticed it , you must have been busy chitchatting with your friends!!! ”
Arundathi just kept eating quietly and so did her father-in-law.
Arundathi chose not to respond to her mother-in-law’s taunts as this was nothing new to her ….Her mother-in-law had always been like this with her since she came to the house as a new bride.
Arundathi and Arnav’s was an arranged marriage and it was a perfect match made in Heaven . They met several times to know each other before saying yes to each other.
But little did Arundathi know that Arnav’s mother Sharada’s behaviour would change soon after their wedding. Since Arnav was the only son of Sharada and Devansh , Arnav and Arundathi had to stay with them as a joint family after marriage as Arnav felt his parents are too old to be left alone and that his mother would never agree with him going out as a nuclear family .
Sharada was a possessive and insecure woman , she would interfere in every matter and force her opinion on even their personal decisions .
Arundathi disliked all these but Sharada would always taunt her and throw tantrums in front of Arnav . She would have problems in Arundathi’s cooking as well. Inspite of the dishes being cooked well, Sharada would come up with nasty comments lik , this is too salty, dal is too oily, roti is not cooked well etc. Arundathi always ignored all these qualities of her mother-in-law as Arnav’s love towards her trumped all these pettiness .
But as days and months passed, it was becoming untolerable for Arundathi and she would lose her patience. She would to complain to Arnav and beg him to live as a seperate family unit , but Arnav somehow always convinced Arundathi through love and all the efforts of Arundathi would go in vain.
Sharada was a dominant personality . Arundathi always wondered how could her father-in-law Devansh survived with her through all these years ? He would always nod to every statement of his wife .Arundathi felt perhaps he loved his wife so much that he ignored and overlooked all these rough parts of her nature .
At times , the petty issues would turn into huge arguments between Arundathi and Sharada and Devansh would stand helpless even though he knew Arundathi was not at fault. He would come up to his daughter in law and say later ,” sorry Arundathi please forgive Sharada , I.will ask you sorry from her side ”
Arundathi always longed for her personal space , to be left alone with her husband , minus her MIL and FIL. Even if they went outstation for a family wedding or some event, they would be back in just 2 days ..
Time flew by and soon Arundathi concieved and went to her mom’s place for delivery.She was happy and relieved that she would be away from her MIL for awhile and soon her daughter Adya was born . Sharada made sure that Arundathi was brought back to their place when Adya turned 6 months.
Arundathi’s problems started all over again …the routine tantrums , the petty showdowns , the nasty comments …. and now it was really difficult for Arundathi to face all these ….as she was tired all the time with handling the baby full time along with the house responsibilities as,well ….She heartily disliked Sharada making faces and doing all sorts of drama whenever Arnav brought some gift for Arundathi and didn’t buy anything for his mother …she felt it spoilt the joy of her gift …
Arnav used to play peacemaker between them but now he started ignoring and didn’t head to Arundathis complaints about his mother, typically presuming it to be the usual saas-bahu friction .
There were clashes and misunderstandings happening in a regular basis between Arnav and Arundathi ,all thanks to Sharada ….and Arundathi was getting irritated and was feeling miserable all the time. She even prayed and wished that Sharada would die soon so she could lead a peaceful life..
The door bell rang and it was Arnav ….he heads straight to the bathroom & takes a quick shower and gets into bed …. just as is about to sleep, Arundathi starts saying ‘Arnav please, I am begging you ….lets move to a seperate house …I cannot live with your mother, please understand., She has made my life miserable , today she is telling me that I am a careless mother , !!!’
Already tired and sleepy, Arnav says “Arundathi you always have a probelm with my mom , please allow me to sleep “, and he closes his eyes, putting a closure to Arundathi’s pleas.
Arundathi was very upset with his unfeeling attitude …. she tossed & turned all night trying to sleep …but sleep refused her ….with all sorts of thoughts running through her head ….
The next day, as Arnav was getting ready to head to office, Arundathi says ” Arnav, I want to go to my cousin’s Meera’s house in Delhi for a week .I need to get away . Meera has already booked my ticket ”
Arnav also quietly says, ” Yes … Please go …it will be a good break for you …”
Arundathi quickly packs her bags and says goodbye to Sharada and Devansh and heads to the airport with Adya.
Sharada just kept looking at her with a satisfied grin on her face.
Arundathi reaches Delhi and her cousin Meera was there to receive her. Arundathi just wanted to be away from all that negativity and be peaceful for this one week and since she was also upset with Arnav not supporting her , she decides to just send a message to Arnav that she has reached Delhi .and then to cut off contact till she
came back ,..
Arnav kept calling Arundathi , messaged her multiple times too.but Arundathi chose to not reply to any of his messages or return his calls …
Arundathi spent a good lazy week with Meera peacefully …she slept in and was happy to have Meera pamper her and baby sit Adya…. and now and it was time for to get back home . Half heartedly she bid a tearful goodbye to Meera and at the airport …
The flight arrived at Mumbai and Arundathi takes a cab to get back home …all the way dreading her MIL’s behaviour when she would reach home…
Arundathi rings the bell and Devansh opens the door. Arundathi looks at Devansh’s pale face and heads a straight
to her room , and dumps her bags ….all the while wondering where is the she-devil, her MIL !!
Arnav is sitting in the room and comes running and hugs Arundathi tightly ….and asks her why she didn’t respond to his calls …
Arundathi just replied casually ….saying I was busy …she still hasn’t forgiven him for not taking her side ….
Arundathi hands over Adya to Arnav and comes out …. puzzled as she still couldn’t see any trace of her mother-in-law…
Arnav comes to Arundathi and tells her, “The day you left for Delhi, Ma fell down in the bath room and has been paralyzed…, she is bedridden …. and she has lost her speech too !!! She is in the hospital and that’s why I kept calling… to tell you about her ….I am feeling terrible Arundathi …I can’t see my Maa like this !!!:” and he had tears rolling down his cheeks ….
Arundathi hugged Arnav and consoled him …. but she smiled within herself …she felt that her mother-in-law was dealing with her own Karma …she wanted to jump with joy , she felt whatever happened with her mother-in-law , was what she deserved …, and slept a peaceful sleep that night ..
The next day Arnav and Arundathi left to see Sharada in the hospital leaving Adya with Devansh ….
Sharada is lying on the bed with some tubes going through her veins , Arundathi looks pitifully at Sharada and comes close to the bed …Her mother-in-law’s long hair looked so messy as it was not combed , Arundathi didn’t know how to react and what to say , as Sharada just kept looking at Arundathi helpessly with tears in her eyes .
Arundathi makes her sit sliding the bed and combs Sharada’s hair … she didnt know why she was doing it …but she did it gently …as she was combing Sharada’s hair ….she didn’t remember all the mean things which her mother-in-law did to her ….she was crying while combing, her heart was filled with compassion and she no more felt angry at her mother-in-law, and was praying silently to God to take back her wish about her mother-in-law dying , she didn’t want Sharda to suffer like this. Sharada looked at Arundathi and folded her two hands ,perhaps trying to ask for forgiveness from Arundathi for whatever she did all these years to her ,, she could not speak … all she wanted to say was sorry and the eyes were moist .
Arundathi hugged her and said her- “it’s ok, from now you will be my daughter …I will take good care of you … don’t worry”.
Arnav also saw this and wiped his tears and was proud of Arundathi and his love for her just deepened….
It’s so easy to love someone when things are perfect and everything is feeling wonderful … but to love someone when they’re messing up and making stupid mistakes ….all the flaws are out in the open …that allows you to see real love and the depth of feeling for each other ….
To love someone when they are at their lowest …and feeling broken inside … when you are willing to stand by them when it is most challenging … that kind of love is most meaningful and beautiful …accepting all flaws & forgiving all mistakes …makes you a better person and you open the door to love coming back to you in full measure …
There is nothing more pure and forgiving as a mother’s love …