She felt ecstatic …seeing the red line on her pregnancy strip.
The whole family rejoiced…god had heard their prayers after ten years of their marriage,
“I will offer a gold umbrella to the goddess if it is a son..”..said her mother in law…
“But ma what if it is a daughter ..won’t you be happy?”Vasundhara felt bitter…n scared at the same time.
“Don’t you even say that it is a girl…I know you will bear me a grandson…so let’s not even utter such inauspicious words” she said…
“Do you also have the same view…you also consider daughter a bad omen?”Vasundhara tossed a question aiming at her husband…
“Leave it…you need to relax…what’s wrong in praying n hoping for a son…after all it’s a son who takes the family name forward” her husband replied.

3 months passed by…after the completion of her first trimester, she was given a summon to get the sex determination test done…
…she had to obey the orders else she’d have to bear the wrath of her mom in law’s rage…
She waited patiently outside the doctor’s cabin after her sonography …the wait lasted only for few mins but it seemed like an eternity…
Her husband flashed a 100watt smile as he stepped outside the ultrasound room after meeting with the doc.

“Oh my love Vasundhara …love you so much,,,, it’s a boy ..can you beat it..it’s a boy”
“Really….god, am so happy this child will survive…my child will survive…had it been a girl……….I would have had to terminate her life “she sobbed with happiness, pain, relief, agony and helplessness.
After the completion of last trimester….the D day arrived n she was rushed to the hospital as her water bag had erupted announcing the arrival of a new life.

Her husband and mother in law waited with a bated breath…waited to hold the newborn in their arms..

After half an hour ….the door opened…
The nurse stepped out and announced…”you may come in and see the mother and the child”
They rushed in…..n the doctor said…
“Ladki hui hai..Mubarak Ho”
“Ladki……….doctor are you mad…my daughter in law was carrying a boy” she screamed ……
“Ma……control……..” her son held her tight to console her……
“I knew it’s a girl….doctor had told me the day we got the ultrasound done……” he said…
“You fooled me all this while…you have become a demon…why didn’t you tell me..why didn’t you kill her….tell me” she grabbed her son’s collar and screamed…
Vasundhara was crying with her physical n mental pain…which had become many notches higher with this emotional stress…the guilt of not being strong enough to stand against the world to protect her child….the Guilt of being a coward who surrendered to other’s wishes against her own desire to protect her child…the guilt of being a weak woman..the guilt of not being able to take the world head on…the magnitude of guilt shot multiple bullets of pain in her body,mind and soul…

“Ma….your son was a demon …but that day just the first glimpse of my daughter….killed the demon in me…the way goddess Durga had killed the demon…and I fell in love with her …I wanted to protect her…my only way out was to lie..so that Vasundhara can have a peaceful pregnancy..l am ashamed of myself, ashamed of being called a man as I was not strong enough to go against you…to defy you…to distinguish between wrong and right…but my daughter -my Durga killed the demon in me…and I became a human that day… today, I am strong….I will not tolerate anyone saying a word against my daughter….a woman shapes the destiny of civilization. Such is the irony that a beautiful creation such as the girl child is today one of the gravest concerns facing humanity
Ma, you do Kanya poojan on ashtami…yet you wanted to kill your own granddaughter …I feel disgusted that I am your son…
those who can not accept my daughter…may leave..” He sounded strong…but broke down towards the last few words he spoke…

His long speech left all the three women present in the room-his wife, doctor, and mother completely numb
Suddenly Vasundhara felt all her emotional, physical and mental pain coming to a halt …
A complete silence had hijacked the room….the old lady walked slowly towards the cradle….picked up the newborn in her arms…
Looked at her and whispered……,” you have killed another demon today……welcome home my child…welcome to this world”

Let’s all kill that demon within us… let’s not wait for any Durga or Shakti to destroy the evil….the first step towards killing that demon is the ability to say NO..to protest..and to not surrender to the circumstances…if you will not fight for yourself,,,who else will????

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