It started with a headache. Was it the end of the world for her? Smriti was about to get married. She had found the love of her life. She had struggled to convince her parents about this union. The boy was not from the same caste as Smriti. They had studied together in college. Jeevan, the boy, was not very handsome. He had the boy next door look but was very intelligent. He had an amazing academic record. Never in his academics had he stood second. He was always numero uno. Do intelligent people have a tender heart? Smriti thought so. Initially, it seemed to be a one sided affair. All the hard work was done by Smriti. She contacted Jeevan through a common friend, Jyoti. Jeevan was a bit arrogant and did not agree to a meeting in the first instance. It took some convincing from Jyoti to get Jeevan on a date with Smriti.
They met at a low profile restaurant called Jannat. Jannat had a low ceiling and the waiters were shabbily dressed. The paint from the walls was peeling off. Jannat had surely seen better days. It was not love at first sight. Smriti was trying to make all the conversation and Jeevan was ignoring her. Smriti thought whether this was the right person for her. But as they say, love is blind. She kept talking to him about her dance performances as she was a good dancer. She was supposed to perform in a week’s time. Somehow she convinced Jeevan to attend her performance. Smriti had arranged a pass for Jeevan for that performance. The date ended without much fanfare. Smriti got an affirmative answer from Jeevan about attending her dance performance. She was delighted. The appointed day came. Jeevan was seated in the first row. Smriti had to remind Jeevan at least four times about the event. While performing, Smriti was very nervous. She, in fact, fell down on the stage while doing a difficult step. She gathered courage, got up and kept dancing. This courageous act of hers might have kindled some sympathy in Jeevan. After the show, Jeevan approached her backstage, applauded her performance and agreed to keep meeting her. Was it a false sense of achievement for Smriti?
They kept meeting after that show and it was always Smriti who made the bulk of the conversation. Jeevan was still a reluctant listener. The more they met, the more Smriti started falling for Jeevan. She herself didn’t understand why was this happening? She consulted a lot of her friends regarding her choice and all of them dissuaded her from pursuing this affair further.
Alas, that was not to be. Smriti was madly in love with Jeevan. The more she pursued him, the farther away he seemed to be going. Then one day, something happened. Jeevan met an astrologer and started asking him about his future. The future seemed to be bright for Jeevan. He was supposed to earn a lot of money and was also supposed to have a happy married life. When Jeevan asked about the details of the kind of girl he would marry, he was astonished to find out that the background of his future wife matched exactly with that of Smriti. Being a superstitious man, he had to think deeply about it. After mulling over it for a couple of weeks, he made a decision. This was more a decision from the heart than from the head. He decided, he would tell Smriti about this. They met at Jannat again. The restaurant hadn’t changed much but the mind of the chief actor had changed. Jeevan told Smriti about his meeting with the astrologer and promised that as soon as he got a job, he would get into matrimony with Smriti. Smriti couldn’t control her tears.
Six months after the crucial meeting, Jeevan got a job with an MNC. He immediately told Smriti to arrange a meeting between their parents. Smriti’s parents were reluctant to give their daughter’s hand in marriage to Jeevan. They were too proud of their caste to agree to this alliance. Jeevan and Smriti played the emotional card and got their approval. They exchanged rings there and then. Jeevan had come prepared for this eventuality.
The date of marriage was fixed and it was a month after their engagement. Fifteen days before the marriage that headache started. Smriti was taken to the doctor; physician was the first point of contact as is usually the case. These days doctors don’t take chances and order as many tests as possible. They don’t want to be held responsible for any untoward incident. MRI scan was prescribed and the result was to come after a couple of days.
On the appointed day, the physician looked at the MRI report in front of Smriti and he feared the worst. He found a pea sized tumor in the left side of Smriti’s brain. To be doubly sure, the physician advised Smriti and her parents to meet a neurologist. The neurologist confirmed the tumor. Smriti was shell shocked when the neurologist euphemistically told her that the chances of her survival were next to none. This was as empathetic as the doctors can get. The whole world crashed for Smriti. The hunky dory future that she had been visualizing lay in shambles.
Jeevan was informed about this mishap. The wheel had come full circle. It was not to be. First, it was Jeevan who was not interested and when he got around, this tragedy struck. The astrologer, in the end, proved wrong.