It was already late. She checked her watch and wiped her almost drenched fore head with the not so yellow handkerchief. ‘Delhi heat is killing’. Impatiently tapping her feet on the car mat, she was about to curse God, Time, her maid, her inlaws and him for her problems when she saw Sonu coming out of the school main door. Sonu, looked delighted to see his mother. It was Saturday and he was much excited about the trip to the Nehru Zoological Park.. Archana did not know how to tell Sonu that there was a change in the plan.
‘Where is Raghu?’
‘Haven’t I told you a hundred times not to use someone’s first name. It is bad manners to do so. Say Raghu Uncle. Raghu Uncle has some work in office and so he will not be able to come with us.’
‘Momma, I call Ankit, Pintu and Maina by their first names so why not Raghu. He is my bestest-est friend. I won’t go without him!’
It was hard to explain to Sonu the reason that Raghu will not come with them to anywhere anymore. After what happened on her Birthday at the restaurant that day she decided to end their relationship or as it the people had it termed it – an affair.
4 years had passed since Prashant had left her and got married with Anjali.
She had balanced the responsibility of a single mother and a working woman for the past 4 years without showing stressed brow or a tearful eye. Everyone had sympathized with her. Her parents were supportive and life was going fine at all ends except..
She had buried her pain, her rejection, the loss and betrayal by a man who had claimed to love her and live with her all his life. She worked hard to secure Sonu’s future. But deep down she knew there was something missing. A hand to caress her shoulder when she returned from office tired and exhausted. Someone who would support and love her. A person to share her happiness and joys with. The night saw the day when Raghu arrived in her life. A new colleague at work and a helping friend after office. He would pick up Sonu from school and help her with the home shopping sometime. The friendship grew and grew into love.
But how could the laws that guard a good wife, mother and a daughter in law pass her getting married again despite the fact that it was Prashant who had betrayed her and was now happily married to another woman. There were rumors and they weren’t good in any way. It crumbled her belief of living happily and respectfully after marrying Raghu. Sonu was her son and would always be. The laws of Infidelity just applied to her – she was a woman. They hadn’t stopped Prashant and will never stop any other Prashant …
Raghu would soon be in Shimla overlooking the Mall road branch of the bank where he had been transferred and she would be back to her single mother life.
She remembers his words: ‘There will be no one who wants to keep you happier than you want to keep yourself. It’s time to think about your own life and happiness.. ‘