My oldest bud
India has managed to retain the great binding power of the concept of “family” unlike many other countries, where kids become independent and usually move out soon as they are out of school/ college.
But as much as there is to be proud of such a culture, I still hate one part of it. And that’s the part where daughters, who essentially form an integral part of any family, get married and move to their husband’s place.
Which is why that in India, when daughters and sisters are on the verge of getting married, it suddenly fills your family with a strong and mixed whirl of emotions, joy that your daughter is going to start a new life, and yet a strong selfish urge to keep her in front of your eyes forever.
Now there’s a reason I’ve been repeatedly using the word ‘daughter’ in this post, much more than the word ‘sister’. While many of us have been blessed with a sister, guess it was partly to do with the upbringing, and partly some other unexplained bond, because of which for most part, I treated my sister like a daughter. I’d be protective, I’d get worried when she was out late, I’d defend her (though only when she was right), I’d shout and correct her when she’d goof up (it’s another story that she’d keep doing the same things again and again, till you gave up on correcting her for it). And while I would use foul language with friends in school, I never wanted her to pick up any of that, so the moment I was with her on the bus, I’d switch off, and not a foul word would be spoken in her presence. I’d even fondly call her ‘bachchi’; a Hindi word for ‘girl child’.
A few months ago, in what felt shorter than a blink of the eye, her engagement was done, and all that was looming on my family’s mind was planning out the enormous task of organizing her wedding that was up a few months later. The four months subsequent to the engagement flew like you’d never believe.
From the invitation cards to clothes shopping, to guest lists, to so many other lists, it was only during one of my lone drives to Pune and back that it hit me that soon I was not going to be able to see my sister, my bachchi as often as I was used to. It’s amazing how you can get so used to people around that you assume that nothing will ever change. And here my head echoed with a deafening ticking of a countdown clock to her wedding.
She was probably the first and is probably the oldest friend I have. Lunch together, bus rides from school, the never-ending fights, the abdominal-catch- inducing jokes we’d share, the late night chats about problems we faced, and so on. From discussing my career to my crushes, I had a solid pal in my sister all along. If I were to pick any memory of my childhood, she has a prominent presence in it.
The past week was filled with function after function, parties, get-together’s, and the whole jazz. And while I have probably never enjoyed myself as much at any other wedding or wedding related function before this, I still had this unhappiness hanging around at the back of my mind, as I knew that they were merely steps in the process of taking my little sister away from me. And to add to it, the fact that Indian weddings are so elaborate that you end up spending most of the last few weeks before the wedding in preparation, rather than with your daughter/ sister; that’s something I didn’t like.
And yet, before I could get a grip on things, she was married, and while she will always be a part of the family, it will be difficult not getting to see her ever so often at home.
And in all this symphony of emotions, the only solace is the fact that we managed to identify for her, a partner who we feel is more than ideal; a perfect companion for her. He is, what I feel, an extension of the love, care and affection we have for her; an extension of, and to our family.
So here’s wishing my oldest friend, my pal, my bachchi, my lil sister, all the happiness in the world.!
We don’t need poems or songs to express sibling love.
It is one of those nicest things which are to be experienced.
Bitter sweet memories are what make our life enriching.
The best thing about the blog is everyone who has sister will find himself in your shoes, about the experiences you articulated is expressed by all brothers.
Sweet, subtle and refreshing.
Thanks for your comment and kind words bro.!
Your best post till date…..coming straight from the heart. Wishing ‘bachchi’ all the best too!
Thanks a lot Su.! I’ll take your word for it. And thanks for the wishes too. Will convey the same to her.
Sibling weddings can be such an emotional sensory overload. It’s weird how during all the pre wedding planning, there is this little voice in your head (not quite loud enough, but still there) that kinda reminds us of the life ahead without the little one. But for some godforsaken reason we choose to ignore it until the actual moment hits us – probably a good thing in hindsight.
Nevertheless an awesome piece Fats, ol’ boy. It’s been nearly 5 years since my sis got married but reading this brought back a tsunami of bittersweet memories.
Here’s wishing bachchi all the very best in life from this fat brother of hers 🙂
Thanks for your comment Fats, and for the awesome wishes for bachchi.! Will convey the same to her. Like you said, I guess in some ways it is a good thing it doesn’t hit us till the last moment, else we’d probably be a grumpy wreck when organizing is what’s required. Here’s hoping for even better times and memories with our lil ones.
Jony Me and Vanya were discussing this what was going on in your mind at the night of reception, when you were lost in some different world though you were trying to hide it by playing around with your cell phone…!!!girls are good at it vanya was spot on and told me that your thinking about your little sister going away from your house to new family that day and all those hidden emotions behind the cell phone has come out in this post.. appreciate bro..amazing post.wishing little sister happy married life…will never forget that new year night she stayed awake with us the whole night…wish she gets all the fun and happiness in life.
Thanks for the neat comment bro.! And thanks for the nice wishes too. Girls observation and other skills, you can safely bet your salary on those skills any day huh? 😉 That New Years eve sure will be a real memorable time to remember. She did have as much fun that evening, if not more, than the rest of us.
I have no words to express on the unconditional love that we share with our siblings right from our childhood till now we eat together we sit together we fight on nuisance of the nuisance stuff howl on them but at the end of the day they are our pillars of strength and love. And your post speaks on the loving bond you shared with Sathvika till now.. God bless her with all the care n love that she deserves from her Mr. RIGHT… 😀 God bless you both and cherish ur bond forever….
Thank you very much for your comment and kind wishes Vanya.! Very true about the special bond that siblings share 🙂
This is one post bro that made me cry the first time I read it and actually makes me cry every time I read it..you rarely express stuff..but when you do, its just so amazing. I consider myself to be the luckiest sis to have such an amazing bro..u’ve been my best friend..someone who I could share anything and everything with..someone who gave me his shoulder to cry on..showed me the real world through his eyes..adviced me..the times when laughed and joked about stuff..some of our jokes maybe a decade or two old but d way we still find it funny..some one who I’d fight with but couldn’t stay without talking to him over an hour…You know what..even though I laughed and denied it when u’d always jokingly say “I’m there for you” …I truly believed it” ..
I Love you bro!!!
That was a really neat msg Sa.! 🙂 Sorry ’bout making you cry with it tho. lol. In a way guess it’s better than the MLTR hit (over a decade old, no?) when you didn’t know whether to cry or laugh 😉 Love ya too kid.