Journal entry – April 2, 2019:

It’s been exactly two months as a married woman. Sometimes I wonder if men are meant to lie thorough their teeth while doing their wedding vows. India has this long list of rules and traditions that must be followed before, during and after the wedding. There are the pre-wedding, the actual wedding and the post-wedding cold-feet situations. Cold feet, when it comes to the man, that is. I’m doing fine. I’m doing okay. I’m lying to you.

I’m far from fine.

It was a match made in heaven. At least that’s what everyone said says. He’s well educated and makes good money. And looks good. You made a brilliant choice, they said. I knew I’d made a very far-from-brilliant choice. You see, when you’re in a relationship with someone, you get too used to them. You don’t want to leave and start over with someone new. You ignore the red flags. You put on your armor: you go into battle. That’s what I did, I went into battle. I’d had several – four, to be precise – years of mastering the art of deception. You see, I’ve been projecting happiness so beautifully it’s impossible to say what I’ve been constantly feeling.

The initial days were just as bad.

It was meant to feel amazing. Your honeymoon phase was meant to make you happy. But not for me. I’ve always been the boyfriend and now I’m the husband, in the relationship. He does nothing. Doesn’t meet me halfway. And I can’t complain, because I chose this. I picked my misery and I picked my battle and I’m going to fight it.

He’s on leave from work this whole week.

He’s spent a total of five minutes with me. I’m not a nagging wife. I didn’t call him. He’s been missing since morning. I don’t know where he is, I don’t know when he’s going to come home. I don’t know how many pot brownies he’s going to wolf down with a friend and I don’t know how much alcohol will be downed. I don’t know any of that. It’s also my birthday and no one remembers around these parts. What are wives for, after all, if not to just bear your body weight and your children? What are wives for, if not to just exist, only when you need them? I married myself, it feels like. There’s work, there are bills I pay, and he doesn’t take care of any of that. I’m proud to say, I don’t make him spend. I never have. Almost half a decade with this man, half a decade of being in pain because somewhere I couldn’t walk away and start over.

I guess, marriage is battle. A lost one. That I’ve no clue what or whom I’m fighting for.