A Tale of Sarees and Woes

When Meera was 18, the uncle who molested her when she was 14 and then again when she was 15, brought a man one day to her house wondering if her parents were willing to get her married. The man he brought with him was a colleague, an NRI and 32 years old. For the next two weeks, everybody at home only talked about the man and how lucky Meera was. But Meera was in love with somebody else, and even if she wasn’t, she didn’t want to get married to Gangappa, the NRI.

When Meera was 22, her mother found out about her affair. There were tears followed by a 2 day fast, followed by more tears and finally, bread and butter for dinner. When Meera was 23 and 24, she started to have a life outside of her home and her relationship with the boyfriend of 9 years. When this happened, relationships that she had left behind began to turn yellow and sour.

Outside of this home, Meera secretly liked wearing sarees. That was perhaps her only guilty pleasure that she took away from the list of things she had learnt not to like: functions, marriages and families for instance. Because of the hysteria built around young women wearing sarees during functions, Meera simultaneously developed an aversion towards it. Unknowingly, her family contributed a great deal to how stubborn Meera had become. Her dementor sister’s insistence on other people having to be in a good mood, if accidentally she woke up with one, had made Meera somewhat of an anti family person. And also because the dementor sister was a splendid daughter, rebelling against parents became twice as difficult for Meera.

She grew to hate her family and their emotional blackmails. Her dementor sister’s Karma speeches and Journey monologues left her with guilt initially and later when she found refuge in laughter and sarcasm, it became easier to ward off her fake Buddhism. Eventually Meera would come to realise that it wasn’t the depression that made her sad at home. It was home that made her sad. Even so, Meera held her ground until one day the worst saree fight ensued between mother and daughter. Meera succumbed because she didn’t know why but later that evening, after she had returned from dumping the blouse material at the tailor’s, something strange happened.

At first, Meera thought it was color from the clothes she was wearing, it was blue one day and green another day. The spots would hurt her more when she felt guilty about wearing a saree when she didn’t want to. She felt guilty because she didn’t have to do this just because her mother was mad. Her mother was always mad, and she could trust her sister to make her madder. If it wasn’t the saree, it was earrings or wearing sleeveless.

A week after the Saree incident, Meera died. A blue saree had weaved itself around Meera’s body and she had died of suffocation and guilt.

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