This is my first attempt at writing a story that is inspired by a real incident.
My name is snehal I come from a Maharashtrian family born and brought up in Pune. My dad works in MNC and my mom is a housewife I have two younger siblings Shruti who is 2 years younger than me and Shreyash who is 4 years younger.
I met the love of my life Karthik in my MBA course. He came to Pune for his masters from Chennai. Karthik was quite handsome and smart. We got to know each other when we participated in our college’s annual fest and slowly started dating each other.
By the time our MBA got over we both got our first job in Pune I got placed in TCS as an HR
and he got placed in HDFC Bank.
Then we decided to tell our parents about our relationship. My parents were not happy about this as they wanted me to marry a Maharashtrian boy but eventually, they agreed when they met Karthik.
Karthik had also told their parents on-call he wanted them to meet a girl who he wanted to marry. His mother asked him if she was from our caste? He said no she is Maharashtrian.
After that, they speak in Tamil which I didn’t understand but by the expression of Karthik, I could sense that I was not getting accepted. after the phone call, I asked him what his mother said he told she is not ready. after hearing that I got really upset but he told me don’t worry he will convince them and suggested we should visit them in Chennai.
After a few days, he called me and said his mother has agreed to meet me so he is booking a ticket for both of us to Chennai. So next Saturday we took the flight to Chennai I was quite happy to meet his parents. once we reached Chennai he dropped me in a hotel which he had booked for me to freshen up and changed my clothes and went to his house.
I took a bath changed my t-shirt and jeans and wore a red saree and did light makeup and hair. I was in two minds that should I tie a pony or keep my hair open then finally I decided to keep my hair open which reached my waistline.
After a few hours he came to pick me in his dad’s car and we went to Karthik house. He introduced me to his family his father is govt employee and his mother is the principal in high school. he has two brothers elder one is Vijay who is married to a beautiful woman Ashwini they have a 2-year-old cute daughter Avya. Younger brother is Vivek who is in last year engineering.
I thought their family will be very strict but his family was very sweet they loved me her mother asked that can I cook ? and I said yes but only Maharashtrian food she smiled said it’s ok we will teach you our food then she said our tradition is quite different from yours will you accept our customs and traditions I said yes of course then we had dinner together and his father took my father’s number to talk to him and discuss further marriage arrangements.
Karthik dropped me back at my hotel and we were very happy that finally, both families agreed. The next day I got a call from Karthik that her mother want to meet me I said ok. Karthik her mother and sister in law came to my hotel room Karthik was quite angry and disturbed so I asked him why are you so upset then her mother said I came here to discuss a very important thing with you snehal after hearing this you might reject this marriage I want you to know before marriage that we have a tradition of groom and bride shaving their head in our native temple after marriage and also once in a five years everyone gets their head shave in Tirumala, will you able to do it? I got the biggest shock of my life I loved my waist-length hair I spend so much time and money on that inexpensive salons and spas now this lady who would be my future mother-in-law wants me to get rid of that. I looked at Karthik and asked did he knew abt this tradition before? He looked at his mother and said Amma she is not from our caste they don’t have such tradition there please don’t do this to her. His mother said so what she will be one of us after marriage and should know and follow our tradition and customs dint your sister in law did it after her marriage. It’s a small sacrifice for a good married life ahead. Then she turn to me and said think about it snehal I know it’s tough for young modern lady like you but I want my daughter in laws to follow this tradition.Once you make your mind then only we will further discuss marriage with your family.
I was in a state of shock I said Amma I need time to think about this and then she replied don’t worry take your time we will leave now, Karthik you drop snehal at the airport we will take uber. We had a big fight over this in-car I said why dint you inform me this before then he said he taught that as you are not from our caste so Amma won’t make you do that. I said I don’t know I need to think on this.
Once I came back to pune Karthik stayed with his parents and then he returned back to pune after a week.my parents asked me how was your Chennai trip I said all good but we need some time to think about our marriage. I haven’t talked to him after coming back from Chennai. I was not picking up his calls and was really angry with him for putting me in this situation I really loved him but dint want to shave my head.
After two weeks he got upset on my behaviour and sent me a WhatsApp message
“Snehal I loved you but sorry for putting you in a situation where you want to choose between Me and your hair and it seems you loved your hair more than me and its not your fault I can understand that but I can’t go against my family so I think we don’t have any future. This will be my last message to you henceforth I wont disturb you and will cherish every moment spent with you❤️
Stay Happy 😊 Bye”
After reading this I started crying my mother looked at me asked snehal what happened? Is everything fine with you and Karthik you really seems to be upset from last two weeks. Then I told my mom everything about Karthik’s mother condition for marriage. My mom smiled and said I know snehal it’s a big decision for you but hair is not your beauty it’s your heart. So don’t give much importance to your hair it will grow back but you won’t get a boy like Karthik. Nowadays many women donate their hair. so think twice before losing a guy like Karthik for your hair.
I wanted to spend my life with Karthik so I called him said I am sorry I want to meet you and I am ready. He came to my house we hugged each other and he said snehal I love you unconditionally with hair without hair its you I want to spent life with not your beauty.Then he informed his mother that snehal is ready .
Our parents discussed our marriage it was fixed after three months in Chennai and our head shave ceremony in his native village was fixed 4 days after marriage. I was shocked so early after marriage they will get my head shave. I requested Amma can you postpone head shaving as I don’t want to go on a honeymoon with a bald head. Amma said sorry I can understand your concern but we don’t have a good day for the next 6 months so we have to do it on that day only. Ashwini Anni told me don’t worry snehal in four months you will have boy cut hair then you can go on honeymoon if you want or you can go with a bald head also. I and Karthik decided to go after four months.
Our entire family and relatives came to Chennai for marriage. One day before marriage I went to a salon with my sister for a hair spa and my sister was teasing me tai why are you wasting money on this you won’t have hair in a few days I said shut up let me pamper my hair for last time I don’t know when I will be able to do it again. So I got my hair trimmed and got hair spa.
We got trough our marriage ceremony next day and now I was Karthik’s wife.once our marriage was done Amma and and ashwini anni started preparing for native village function where me and Karthik would get our head shaved.
One day before the ceremony we traveled to karthik’s native village which was around 2 hour drive from Chennai. My family also joined us for this ceremony.kunal was teasing me tai you will look funny without hair. My mom said him to keep quiet and told me its ok snehal don’t think about head shave think about your are now married to a guy who you loved.That diverted my mind a bit from head shave.We reached karthik’s ancestral house in village there were lot his relatives already present.
A night before I was talking with Karthik on the terrace the amma and Ashwini Anni came and gave me a gold nose ring. I said but I have not pierced my nose then Ashwini Anni said tomorrow they will do it. Amma said don’t worry it won’t pain they are experts. I said ok
They both went away and karthik held my hands said don’t worry you will look hot with bald head don’t know about me.I replied you will look like cartoon and we had laugh and then went to sleep.
The next morning we woke up from the knock on the door it was amma with one house help carrying tea and some clothes. she said hurry up you both are still sleeping, snehal wash your hair properly today wear this saree.it was a red colour saree. And for you, Karthik wears this dhoti and shirt and get ready I have a lot of work pending. snehal I will send Ashwini to get you ready. Come down by 9 am.
Karthik hugged me and asked are you ready for the big change? I was quite nervous I said yes he went down. I got bath washed my hair for last time then wore a saree by the time Ashwini Anni came and asked ready for the big day I said yes so Anni said come sit I will braid your hair. She braid my hair put some flower in that and did little makeup.
We went to their native temple and there was already 1 barber sitting there removing his tools from his bag. Amma came to me said snehal you go first I had 1000 butterflies in my stomach as I saw my family standing and smiling I went to my mom and hugged her she said go ahead snehal you doing it for your new family. I went and sat in front of the barber the Ashwini Anni came said something to the barber in Tamil after that he removed the flower from my hair then started putting water from a bottle on my scalp and massaging then he took a blade and put it in the razor and bent my head and started scraping my hair. when the first chunk of my hair fall on my lap I closed my eyes in a few minutes my waist-length hair was gone and I was bald.
Amma came touched my head and said something again in Tamil and the barber once again shaved my head after that amma was satisfied then the barber put down the razor and took out a needle-like thing for my nose piercing. Then he told amma to hold my head and then he pierced my nose through that needle and then ring was put through that.I was not able to stop tears due to pain.
Once it was over I stood up and amma hugged me and said “Its over snehal don’t cry you look beautiful and thank you for doing this”
I touched my bald head for the first time its felt so different. Then karthik came to me gave me a smile and went to the barber and sat, in next few minutes his head was also shaved. I look at karthik and said “you look funny without hair, it will take me sometime to see you like this”.He smiled and replied
“but you look beautiful without hair.”
My mom said, “snehal you look so cute without hair”.Everyone liked our new look.
Next we got changed then perform some ritual pooja and next day came back to Chennai.My parents went back to pune and we stayed back in Chennai.
Next day I got a call from my best friend Shweta she was not able attend my marriage because her husband has moved to USA.I told her can you do a video call I want to show you something and she said ok.And when she did she was also shocked and said snehal what have you done to your hair? Why? Then I explained her about the ritual took place in karthik native village but she also liked my new look and said I also want to try once in her life I replied when come back to india I will take you for your head-shave.
A day before me and Karthik was to travel to Pune me and Ashwini Anni has gone for some shopping. I had some 14 days hair stubble on my head and I told Ashwini Anni that my head is itching it was far better when it was smooth Anni looked at me and smiled and said I have a solution come with me and she took me to a nearby barbershop shop and I said anni it’s a barbershop she said yes parlour will charge us bomb for a reshave.