Friday, November 28

You're a Pa, Mate!

Hi Sweetheart,

Welcome to Fatherhood!

You’re an incredible person, and I can think of a hundred reasons why I love you.

Yeah yah, I know you don’t believe in having reasons to love somebody, but then you and I disagree on so many things; let this be another pleasant one… Just so that I can find ways to praise you and express how much I adore you. I never tire of it, and I don’t think you have any reason to do so either. “Neki aur pooch pooch” as they say in Hindi.

I have known you as a very different person as compared to the rest of the world. True, you are charming and you manage to awe both men and women alike. (Something that really worries me, given that people confuse gentlemanliness for flirting in the current century.)

However, it is my perception that you have given me a special privilege to know you as you are, and you keep a slightly more opaque exterior to the rest of humanity. Let me be blissful in this ignorance if I am mistaken.

I met an uptight, serious man while working at IBM nearly 4 years ago who left absolutely no impression on me. Since we were in the same team and cab, I struck a polite conversation with you, and was sort of surprised to learn that you could talk nonstop to an almost stranger about something I consider quite personal. Scarcely did I realize that you thought I was hitting on you! That was the last thing on my mind; I was only trying to be friendly to a new team-mate. But that is how destiny shapes up, right? Misunderstandings lead to new beginnings...

One thing led to another and I found myself chatting with you on IBM Sametime and going on coffee breaks with you – something that raised more than a few eyebrows in our gossip-crazy VnA team. I knew there was nothing between us, you barely spoke and I did not find much in common with you. But you knew that something would definitely happen – something I got to know much later. Your intuition is appreciable, young man. Keep it up.

We started meeting outside of work, you made special effort to meet me on my birthday; I knew something was in the air. You asked me out, and I said I needed time. You waited for all of 8 months as I made up my mind and on October 17, 2011, I decided I was ready to be yours.

That was not the end of it; it was actually the beginning of our struggle.

Neither of our parents was thrilled about our decision, for their own reasons. I still remember vividly how I tried to win your dad over on phone while you paced around listening to our dialogue in the University of Pune garden at dusk. You came over in a brave attempt to convince my parents, and I still marvel at your courage and straightforwardness. Phew... you've got balls, young man!

Countless strategizing sessions and convincing conversations later, we managed to win the support of my family, while yours remained hostile. That did not deter you, and you kept insisting we elope. Now I think, maybe we should have! It would be another adventure in our awesome journey together....

Amidst honor killing threats, we dealt with our own sweet and bitter fights. I got to know you better, and it was like knowing someone entirely different from the person I had first met… 

To cut a long story short, things kind of worked out and I found myself getting ready for our big day. June 29, 2012 we got married and started a new chapter in our lives. It was just like the movies – we won some, we lost some, we got better and sometimes we got worse. We annoyed and impressed and hurt and loved and disappointed and frustrated each other. 

Some days were just unbearable, and others were a delight. We created great and not so good memories and we learnt pleasant habits and hard lessons. But all the while, we stuck together and got stronger.   

We are so dissimilar, you and I. And yet, we stand united for all the things that truly matter. 

We crossed so many hurdles, both personal and professional, and we fulfilled so many dreams, both individual and shared. Buying bikes and a house and car, traveling within and outside the country, both of us getting promoted at work, and so many other milestones in our topsy-turvy lives… Well done, baby.

All those superb bike rides to CCD Chandni Chowk and back at dawn, wandering in the Goan streets for Lavazza coffee and warm apple pie, endless shopping trips in Phoenix mall and camp, our Mabi honeymoon and Kerala escapade, Baskin Robbin and Venky’s chicken cravings, fixations with sizzlers at Prem’s and Bounty’s… hours seem few when I think of you and the wondrous memories you’ve given me. They stay interspersed with the wicked moments where you and I upset each other, misunderstood and isolated each other… All the while, knowing true and well that we would always be together… But then doubting that too…   

You took care of me when I had my eye surgery done and I got a chance to pamper you when you banged your head against a truck and fractured your arm. All those countless times you took me on midnight dates before and post marriage and all the innumerable occasions when you fell ill and made me fret. When I was about to deliver our precious child, you held my hand through the unbearable pain and gave me strength. It was touching to see my agony reflected in your pretty eyes.

We have done well and we could only have done it together, no matter how much you and I highlighted (or minimized) our individual roles in these events when the going got tough.
And now, here we are, with yet another milestone in our lives. Probably the biggest one till date, I can say.

Our baby arrived into this world on November 15, 2014 and made us a family from just a bickering, love-struck couple. My passion for you has increased with this upgrade, and words fail me as I begin to thank you for taking such amazing care of me during my pregnancy. True, it wasn’t all rosy and idyllic, but I will certainly recall it with much warmth and happiness. You tried to make me happy and pampered me like a little girl. Thank you.
We now have a new identity, we are now proud parents of our little bundle of joy. This blessing, this gorgeous miracle is god’s gift to us and I am sure he is just as lucky to have us as we are to have him. We have great things planned for him, and he has brought good fortune to both our families while he was still in my tummy. With him gracing this world, I rejoice that all our lives will get happier and more satisfying.   

Thank you for giving me this lovely present – this beautiful ray of sunshine which will brighten our days and lives. It will be tough at times, but I am sure we will cope up brilliantly just like we have done in the past.

I love you Akhilesh Singh, and you’re a wonderful man… don’t you forget that, even when I am abusing the s*it out of you during my moody witch moments.  

I know you will be a better husband and father every passing day, and both Arush and I are glad to have you in our lives.

Stay happy, my darling. I will love you till the end of time, and later too.

Just yours for eternity…
Through phases of affection and squabbles…


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