Some of my friends are keeping karvachauth fast owing to the custom in their in-laws’ house, others are keeping it having grown up seeing their mothers keep it, year on year. Some are treating it as an excuse to dress up while others are simply giving their friends company. My reasons are none of these. Neither my mother in law nor my mother fasts on this day.
My reason is purely love for my husband.
He is not a perfect person but is as close to perfect for me, as can be. He is not keeping the fast today to accompany me and I appreciate his honesty. Neither is he showering me with gifts to impress me. He is not the toughest or most handsome man I know (I am not going to hear the end of this from him!!!). But he does all these little things that matter and his humility is so endearing.
Every year we have this discussion on why I need to fast and he promises me a gift if I actually don’t keep it but ultimately he graciously accepts and respects my decision to fast all day. He also honours our annual tradition of taking me out for a special lavish dinner on this night and watches a famished me eat like there’s no tomorrow.
He is the cool head when I’m getting cranky due to pangs of hunger. Still brings a smile on my face every time he looks at me. He compliments me when I wear something new.
He is the man I always dreamt of and now is my reality.
My fast today (in addition to the traditional reasons of praying for his long life and getting him in all my future lives, which I truly do not believe in) is a small way of expressing my love for him. I choose convenience and practicality any day and do not follow rituals as strictly as they are meant to be. I may skip the traditional mehendi or purchasing a new outfit for the occasion. Or I may even not wake up pre-dawn to eat as I value my sleep more. Also, I may have water through the day to avoid getting dehydrated. I may not remember the “Kahani” inspite of listening to it every year. I may even choose a light comfortable outfit to grace the occasion. But in the end, it’s something I choose to do in my own way and relish it.
Indian traditions often are targeted as regressive and illogical. To each his own. This one has a special place in my heart and I will continue following it as long as I can because I know “I don’t have to do it instead I want to do it”. In that is true liberation.
I would love to hear what Karvachauth means to you. Share in comments bellow.