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Yesterday, my mother called me up and gave me the news that Divya ( my cousin Nikhil’s wife) is going abroad as she has got a job there. I was very happy but surprised too. They had got married only last year and she had left her job in order to take care of the house.
Divya is a very beautiful and educated girl. She is a teacher by profession while Nikhil takes care of his father’s business. Mrs Mehta, my aunt, is very happy to have such a daughter in law. Nikhil is her youngest son after two daughters, both of whom are married and settled abroad. She welcomed Divya to her house with all the love and affection.
Divya left her job thinking that she needs to give time to her house and family. She took a break from her studies too. My aunt gave her all the freedom and independence as she had given to her daughters.
My aunt encouraged her to continue her studies and not to be bothered about the responsibilities of the house. She motivated her to look for a job again.
My aunt called up my mom, the excitement in her voice was obvious.
“ Behenji, Divya has got a job in America. They are offering her a very good salary package and will be providing accommodation too.”
My mom inquired, “That's wonderful. What about Nikhil?”
My aunt replied, “He doesn't want to go but I told them they need not worry about us and think about their future.” My mom was greatly impressed.
My aunt has just fought a battle against cancer. Nikhil wants to take care of his parents. He knows that his father needs him in his business and his mother too needs to be taken care of. He doesn't want to leave them.
My aunt told my mother, “Behenji, I told both of them they should move ahead in life. We are strong and can take care of ourselves. Why should we become an obstacle in the growth and prosperity of our children?”
She is very proud of her daughter in law. She made all the arrangements for her the way she had done for her daughters. According to her, parent’s love and emotions have their own importance and she doesn't want it to become a hurdle in her children’s future.
I felt overwhelmed. Never for once she differentiated between her son, daughter and daughter in law. She motivated her daughter in law to progress in her career. She is ready to send her son to live independently.
She did not hinder their growth with her own insecurities. She did not burden them with the responsibilities of her own health or age problems. She broke all the stereotypical notions of a mother in law and has brought a freshness in the complicated relationships of a mother in law and a daughter in law. She has defined the term “mother in law” in a new way with her modern thinking and a positive outlook.