This chapter is a part of the novella – A girl was born under the theme Yesterday Today Tomorrow. Here’s the first chapter – https://firsttimemommy.net/2018/04/01/a-girl-was-born/
While she loved the evenings, she hated the mornings. In the morning, her granny massaged her with chick pea flour and cream. She rubbed her hard to remove the excessive hair on her body, particularly moustache and chin. And, also to make her complexion “a little whiter”. Her parents were fair complexioned and very good looking. And it bothered her grandmother that Tara was not.
“Don’t know after whom she has taken?” She complained and massaged her harder that made Tara cry.
Her poor mother pleaded with her grandmother to stop with her massage, and the old lady finally gave in to her mother’s tears. Now, every time Tara visited a beauty parlour, she cursed her mother.
Three years later, her sister was born. Very fair, very beautiful. And then two years later, her brother was born. Rose pink complexion.
She never realized that she was different until that one day when she was 7 years old, she overheard one of her mother’s friends saying, “She is quite dark for your family. Though her features are nice, you might have trouble marrying her off.” She didn’t wait for her mother’s reply. Immediately, she ran to her cupboard that had mirrors on the inside of both its doors.
She looked in the mirror. She had never really paid attention to the mirror before. She looked at her face closely. It looked just the same the same. But, something arrested her eye.
She was dark. Yes. But she never gave it any thought until now. How did it make her different from her family?
That night at dinner, she looked closely at her brother and sister. Her sister looked quite like her. Except her skin colour. She was fair. Many shades fairer than her. She looked at her brother then. Though he was not as fair as the other sister, he was still fairer than her. Then her eyes fell on her mother’s skin. She was so fair, and so was her father. She was the odd one out. The dark one.
Though she didn’t want to get married at 7, and didn’t know what marriage was, she knew one thing, that she was lacking something that was important to so many people in this world around her.
That night, she sat in the cupboard and quietly closed the doors. And in the small, dark and confined space, she sobbed. What she was crying for, she did not know. But, she was hurt. For the very first time she realized she was different from her family.
After her tears were spent, she realized it was stuffy in the cupboard. She opened up the doors a little bit, just a tiny bit to let the air come in. She checked her face in the door mirrors, her eyes were red and swollen.
The cupboard became her favourite hiding spot for many years to come, whenever she wanted to cry or spend some time alone. Till the day she could fit in no longer. Till the day, she realized she could cry in the bathroom as well. It was bigger, spacious and airy. And, she could easily drown the sound of her sobs in there as long as she kept the tap on.
So, in total filmy style she cried “Why me? Why have you made me so different? Why couldn’t I be fair like my family?”
Things changed for the better in movies. But, for her, nothing changed. She was still the same dark complexioned the next day and the day after then.
But, one thing changed. Her attitude towards her family. She had a very strong suspicion that she had been swapped at the hospital with another baby.
Just one more day for the 3rd chapter in the series…