Yesterday, I went for dinner with a friend (I often call him the male version of Rumana in my life 😛 ), his family and their friend; a couple. So the husband, Rick is this really cheerful guy, I’ve never seen anyone like him, like nothing in the world could bug him. The wife, Asha was chill, the “saner” of the two. We were all having a really good time, sitting at this restaurant outdoors, the husband talked to me about the most trivial things, like my non-existent love life and stuff, he was such a happy guy , but you could tell there’s something missing in their marriage, it was so evident, I noticed this, and I had just met them.
So we were talking about everyone’s birthdays and Rick says, “tomorrow’s the 14th, isn’t it?” and Asha just smiles and nods at him, then he takes her hand and says “you’re not gonna let me wish her this birthday either, are you?”
By then we were all confused, so my friend’s mum asked them to explain what’s going on. So Rick tells us its his first love’s birthday tomorrow, but Asha never allows him to wish her, and if/when this first love messages him, he’s not allowed to reply either. So we all ask Asha why Rick’s not allowed to message this woman, loads of exes are friends with each other so why not them? Aisha’s response was something I didn’t think was possible for any wife to say about her husband and another woman:
“Because they’re perfect for each other”
I’m pretty sure my friend and I gasped. But the rest of the adults were still chill, like they were talking about the current economic situation or something. So I asked Rick why it didn’t work out if they were so perfect for each other. He said that nothing was wrong, they were 19 (winks at me), young and in love, but they were of different faiths, he’s Muslim and Ms. First Love is Hindu.
At this point, all the adults were making comments like, “Ufff, impossible!” Rick completely agreed with them and said, “So I ended it with her, it was painful guys, she was my first love, my pehla pyaar, but time somewhat heals things, I eventually married my best friend, who was there the whole time, Asha”. So basically, Asha knew how Rick felt for this girl; she probably listened to all the amazing things Rick had to say about Ms. First Love, but still ended up marrying him.
I don’t know what was more astounding; the fact that his wife is just smiling at him while he was talking his first love so passionately, even though decades have passed, or how the rest of the adults were so chill about this. How could someone marry a person, knowing that their heart probably belongs to someone else? In my head, I was debating all sorts of things, it hurt, like how Ms. First Love and Rick are not together today, solely because they don’t follow the same religion, and how they shouldn’t have let that get in between them even though its a tough path, blah blah.
That’s when it hit me. This, is life. It’s not always about getting married to your one true love and living happily ever after, life has more shades to it, it’s so much more complicated than that. But it also doesn’t mean life is a pit hole of tragedy, maybe this was a better path for Rick. He’s married to his best friend. True, they may not share the same passionate love he shared with Ms. First Love, but he has the memories of her. Rick has a beautiful family today and I’m sure he has no regrets, he’s happy. That’s what matters.
Sigh, “It’s bitter to know. It’s better to know”.