Fathers, Feelings, India, Love, Marriage, Relationships, Social Media, Such is life, Thoughts and musings, Whines and whispers

Should a wedding anniversary be celebrated only till your spouse is with you?

27th April is my parents’ wedding anniversary. A day I grew up watching them enjoy and celebrate every year with much love and affection. It was a cherished annual ritual for my mother to buy new sarees or jewellery for this special occasion. Dad gorged sumptuously on the specially-curated menu and basked in all the attention showered upon him. As kids the long-drive to a dhaba with Dad’s friends’ families in the city outskirts and the yummy food was our biggest lure. All in all, everyone had a reason to rejoice! 🙂

My mother had a brilliant memory and remembered special dates and occasions without ever having to note them down. Although she was choosy about who deserved her call, we were often served a day’s significance dose along with our morning tea. I always marvelled at her skill in recollecting who belonged at which precise place in the family tree. That too not just ours, mind you. (After almost twelve years I still cannot differentiate between A’s mamas and chachas at times 🙁 ) Impressive, huh?

As her health deteriorated and her memory started playing tricks with her, a lot of things changed. Her eyesight became weak. Our relatives (older generation included) super actively joined social media, which she found arduous and tacky. Nevertheless, after much deliberation she started using Whatsapp, only after the promise of A Jr’s pictures everyday. However, gradually, calls dried up for my offline Mom. The apathy of family/friends towards her conventional ways broke her from inside.

Dad listened to her wails in silence. What could he say? The sad part about relationships is that they break without any noise but taint us irreparably for life. I’m not sure (and don’t care now) whether her sentiments ever reached those responsible. She should’ve gone with much less hurt though. 🙁

When I called to wish Dad on their first wedding anniversary after her passing away, he was pleasantly surprised but happy. Honestly, I loved that. He lost his partner but he deserves to celebrate this special day in his life, doesn’t he? It marked the beginning of a beautiful journey and gave them new experiences everyday. They made a beautiful family and created a lovely home for themselves. They stood by each other through thick and thin and became a role model for many couples. Life cannot be lived more fully and better than this, can it?

It hence broke my heart when Dad casually mentioned that apart from me and my brother no one bothered to call or wish him. These days are just dates on the calendar, I know. The memories attached with them and the people related to them, however, make them special. My intent is not to preach or rant but is expecting to spare a few moments for a man who lost his life partner of 35 years too much?

His emotional balance is astounding, yet one can never forget that lions age too. Has the new impersonal world of social media and the publicly visible instant gratification of likes and comments made us dispassionate about interpersonal relationships? I’m truly scared for the future of mankind with this strange evolution.

Change is inevitable. Yet, can we as humans forget that affection is an emotion that even animals have and identify with? Our relationship with machines, screens or apps cannot help us rest in peace. Let us value people more than some fancy gadget, shall we?

What are your views on this? Please do share with me.

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20 Comments

  1. Your post has thrown new light on a subject I often think about, Varsha.
    Speaking for myself, I would be hesitant to wish someone who has lost a spouse a Happy Anniversary, fearing their reaction to my wishes. What if the hurt they feel at losing their spouse is rekindled? Or what if my wish serves as a reminder of a memory they are trying to forget?

    In my case, not wishing someone is respecting their privacy.

    As for relationships these days, what can I say that you haven’t already written about?

    Being in touch on Social Media only gives you the illusion of being in touch, while we move further and further away in reality.

  2. That’s so lovely of your to share your story and agree with the feelings shared on special occasion!! It still gives you the freshness in relationships and love and importance of lost ones

  3. Depends upon your relationship. If it’s superficial, you can easily ditch it however if your love is real, you will celebrate it everyday.

  4. Anagha Yatin says:

    From virtual back to real, the road definitely seems to be too long for all of us. New technology is not bad, its over use makes it worst. Lets use the same technology to stay connected with the real persons behind the gadgets, behind the internet “maya jaal”

  5. I literally have tears in my eyes… I am very insensitive otherwise but for my parents I can do anything… This just made me cry and I have no words! 🙁

  6. That’s a really beautiful write up. Truly a person deserves to celebrate those special days even after they loose their partners.

  7. This post made me so emotional, I had tears in my eyes. Really, gadgets are overpowering us!

  8. jhilmildsaha says:

    Thats very heart touching. The world we live in has becoming stranger day by day with our fixation with inanimate objects rather than real touch of human beings

  9. I don’t have words to describe how your post made me feel after reading it. You made me really emotional and yes I agree, marriage anniversary should be celebrated always and forever.

  10. THIs is such a beautiful post. Yes even if you lose a spouse you can cherish the day you met them

  11. Such an emotional yet true post. Made me realize that people have lost their feelings due to all this social media. Happy anniversary to uncle, his love will never die.

  12. What a great thougjt , I never thought this way hats off to you

  13. SUch a heart warming post and topic. You know I feel any date is simply aa number until there are feelings attached to it. So one should celebrate these spl. days only till one feels for it. Spouse living or passed away doesnt matter

  14. Papri Ganguly says:

    I just lost my words. Lovely write up and beautiful concept.

  15. A well written post. I guess as they grow old or one looses the other partner, we should be more xompascompass towards them . Little memories add lot of life.

  16. I’m really touched by your post. Such a beautifully written. one thing I can say, Good old Memories remain lasts forever.

  17. Wow! Deep thoughts, never thought of this before. I guess it depends person to person.

  18. preety85 says:

    It’s a heart touching post, I never thought to wish someone who had lost his /her life partner coz I always afraid from their reactions.

  19. such a heart-rending post. A person should celebrate the anniversary, atleast with the kids, even if the spouse passes away; one of the beautiful ways to keep the memories alive. and others wishing someone who lost his spouse; i suppose, its a personal choice…may be they are not comfortable with the idea. What do you say? but I am sure your father must be really happy on receiving wishes from his kids.

  20. I am speechless now and tears in my eyes.. very beautiful write-up ..

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