This is it… #ThrowbackThursday

I mentioned finding some of my writing from my youth in an earlier post.  My mum loved this piece of writing that I had composed at school, it even won me an award in a writing competition!

Reading it now, seeing my views on marriage at the tender age of 14 was quite funny! No, this is not a biographical retelling of my own wedding morning, but it was different in so many respects when it actually did happen, but oh, so similar too!

I hope you enjoy!

It was five o’clock this morning, when I woke up. I couldn’t believe that today was THE DAY. I got up and was greeted by the grinning faces of all my sisters and parents. Everything had been a dream up until now, but, it was all finally happening.

I was pushed into the bathroom as everyone told me that today I would need the most time to get ready. I spent half an hour trying to scrub the oily turmeric putty that had been applied all over my arms, legs and face so liberally the night before. Incredible that I managed to sleep with all of that greasy ‘muck’ on last night, but then, that’s what tradition dictates, so how could I argue? The next step, washing all the oil from my hair, also applied last night, some type of blessing. I didn’t mind the blessing, but the ceremonial oil, I could have done without! It really doesn’t help when you have overenthusiastic sisters and cousins who go through the ritual, just to make you look a mess!

Finally scrubbed clean, I went downstairs to have my breakfast, having been told that I ‘need to keep up my strength today’. Downstairs, everyone was busy, some drinking tea, some ironing their clothes, with extra care. Mine, of course, had all been done the previous night, the privilege of being someone in my situation! It was quite funny to see the whole house turned completely haywire, and all because of me, while I sat, eating toast and watching everything with much amusement!

Soon, the group of overexcited women and girls grabbed me, dragging me back up to my, while I was still trying my hardest to finish the most important meal of the day! Everyone seemed much more excited than me, rushing to and fro, trying to get ready, while watching me as well. I started to get nervous so my cousin ushered everyone out of my room, with the strictest of instructions that no one was to disturb me now.

She brought my makeup, toiletries and ‘The Outfit’. Then I was sat down and she started to comb my hair. Slowly the frizzy mane was tamed and became a neat pleat which was not going to be seen by anyone today (not until much later!) Next was my makeup. Basic makeup, light, but emphasising my eyes and mouth. Then came the tricky part, the ‘bindis’ across my forehead. Bright pink, green and white was used to create an elaborate, elegant pattern above my eyebrows.

The following stage to getting ready was putting on all of the jewellery. I had a gold set, consisting of a necklace and earrings. This was put on, feeling so much heavier than the costume jewellery that I usually wore. Then the traditional ‘tikka, hanging down the middle of my forehead. So special, it was passed to me from my mother who had worn it at the same juncture in her life. The next adornment was very uncomfortable, the nose ring, connected to a chain which hooked just about my ear. Then I had two bracelets with five fine chains attached. At the end of each chain was a ring to go on my fingers and thumbs. I was already wearing the most important element of jewellery, the set of bangles, my ‘chura’, put on me last night by my maternal uncles.

Now, finally it was time to dress. I had always dreamed of wearing this outfit. I pulled on the bright pink top, and the long, swinging skirt, its hem reaching my henna pained feet. The skirt had beautiful gold embroidery on it, whereas the top was completely plain. My cousin then proceeded to arrange my ‘dupatta’, my scarf, on my head. Low enough to cover my face, but high enough so I could be seen respectfully.

I then slipped the pink shoes with matching gold embroidery on. Traditional shoes always complimented a traditional outfit, rather than gold heels. I looked in the mirror and a completely different person looked back. Surely that couldn’t be me!

Everyone was knocking on the door now, wanting to see me, so my cousin slowly opened the door to gasps of wonder and compliments.

By this time it was eight o’clock in the morning. Three hours had passed since I had woken up, and it was still just the beginning of the day. We were hurried into the car as we had to leave now if we were to get there on time. I had begun to shake now, so my cousin, who sat next to me, held my hand. She admired the elaborate henna patterns on the palms and backs of my hands. A deep, almost black maroon/red colour which had taken the whole night to achieve.

The car slowed. We were finally there. I didn’t want to get out of the car, but I had no choice really. I walked in and was taken to a small room, with several chairs, a sofa and table in it. Tea and some samosas were brought for me, and my cousins and sisters who were with me. I was told to stay here until I was called, and it was time.

We sat, the girls giggling to each other, and other members of my family passed in and out of the room, blessing me, telling me how lovely I looked, and giving me kind words of encouragement. I was given another cup of tea ‘to keep my strength up’ but I was totally unable to drink it.

My brother walked in, looking so smart. When did he get so big? This signalled it was ‘time’. I got up, and my brother took hold of my arm. All of my girlie entourage came behind us. We walked up the stairs and soon entered the crowded room, after removing our shoes. All eyes were upon us as we walked down the middle of the room. Closer and closer I got to the holy book. Finally I was there. There was no going back now as I knelt, and paid my respects to the Guru Granth Sahib by bowing my head and touching my forehead to the floor, ‘matha tek’. I sat down at the front, and slowly turned my head.

This is it – sitting next to the man who is about to become my husband. He turns his head and smiles. Is he as bewildered as me? I look back at the holy book, and smile to myself. This is truly the beginning of my new life – as a married woman.

41 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Erika Kind
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 18:50:49

    Oh, how exciting and romantic!! Sigh!!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  2. fattymccupcakes
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 18:42:39

    You wrote this at just 15?! You have always been so talented, friend! Wonderful writing and story!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  3. Ivy
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 17:00:19

    Wow, a vivid writer at such a young age. It’s awesome that you hold onto writings from your youth. I wish that I’d done the same thing.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  4. Carol
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 16:25:42

    Just beautiful Ritu very well written for your age and what lovely marriage traditions :0

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  5. Jennie
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 16:00:26

    Wonderful, Ritu. Just wonderful!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  6. Gloria
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 14:59:42

    Wow Ritu! This is beautiful and romantic! I love your traditions, the clothes, the colour, make-up and the jewellery. As you know, Tasheenga & her friends transpired as a result of my curiosity for Indian culture.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  7. OIKOS™-Redaktion
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 13:12:50

    Reply

  8. debyblogs
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 09:57:53

    This was a lovely read. You were a good writer even earlier on! That’s just beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  9. Debbie Harris
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 09:21:03

    Such fun to read through old writings, loved this story Ritu!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  10. fancypaperblog
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 08:45:06

    This is wonderful! I love stories written like this when you have to rethink who you are nearly.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  11. crazywriterof6
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 08:40:56

    That was awesome… Other cultures wedding serimonies are amazing to me. Even my own cultures, lol…

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  12. foodzesty
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 08:33:45

    Awww Ritu this was lovely

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  13. Shailaja V
    Jan 04, 2018 @ 08:18:32

    An enjoyable read filled with all the emotions of a new bride on her wedding day. You took me back to mine, Ritu! I would love to see pictures of the dress and the henna if you have them 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  14. sunsetdragon
    Jan 05, 2015 @ 01:01:32

    I really enjoyed reading this.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  15. Shannon
    Jan 04, 2015 @ 21:20:12

    This is adorable! I always wanted to do the mehendi and never had a reason or time. Pretty good for 14 years old! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  16. weggieboy
    Jan 04, 2015 @ 19:21:24

    Interesting! Nicely written, too. You were very talented as a child!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

    • Ritu
      Jan 04, 2015 @ 19:28:20

      Aw thank you!! I hope I have evolved a bit… Might rewrite it with the head of a more mature person on!
      (When the kids give me time!)

      Like

      Reply

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