Wednesday, April 01, 2015

Of Cousins and Wedding Invitations

I got married in 2006, the first of the cousins on either side to do so. I waited impatiently for the others to get married, so I could do all the fun things they did at my wedding, make all the demands, enjoy all the events, savour the anticipation. Eventually one did get married but his wedding was in another country and his mother, my aunt, did not invite my parents (her own brother!) so I dropped in with a gift at the reception but did not stay. Not much of a happy memory, especially unfortunate given that I met his wife properly later on and really liked her, and their son.

Last year another cousin got married and his father, my mother's cousin, came and invited us and I was quite excited, as were my parents. Except they never did get their invitation. We will never know why since my parents are the kind of people whose blessings people take when their weddings are organised, and I have known prospective brides, grooms and their families to go to great lengths to ensure my parents' attendance at the wedding -- but that was not the case here. This led to some lasting ill-will and ensured that when this uncle's daughter got married some months later, none of us received an invitation. In fact, the family went to some trouble to hide the date from us, which still baffles me!

So, that's three cousins whose weddings I could not attend.

Now it's April and cousin T is getting married in a fortnight in Delhi. She is the closest to me in age and as children we were quite close, confiding our secrets in each other, sharing many common interests. But she doesn't want me at the wedding. Her mother, who I once looked up to and believed loved me, has spent many months telling whoever would listen how she doesn't want any of our family there. When her parents did come over with the invitation to the reception, they were neither particularly inviting nor especially interested in whether we were coming. I don't usually stand on ceremony with close family but I do know when people are being unnecessarily offensive. The wedding itself was decided upon about a year ago but our card was dropped off by Cousin T's maternal grandmother's help one evening, late enough to ensure that we couldn't possibly make it to Delhi. The other cousins I have never been particularly close to but I did not realise Cousin T and her family would take such pains to ensure I would not be around. I really don't know why and I don't think the reason matters at the end of the day.

These are the doings one cannot undo.


Anonymous said...

I like the way you sound very matter of fact about something that must have made you sad. Bravo.

Sue said...

Anon -- Needs must.

Anonymous said...

Hi Sunayana,

It's amazing to have someone write about these things. So relatable. "Why did she say she was sending a present when she clearly wasn't about to?"
"Why am I always the one keeping in touch?"

Or "why did that aunty call to taunt me about not being married yet!"

Glad you write about stuff that falls somewhere between the billboard and the cheatsheets, into which is scribbled so much of our life.

Keep writing :)

Anonymous said...

My cousin with whom I grew up like a sibling, stopped talking to me after she got married. I also heard her tell some acquaintance that I am her classmate. The world is full of weirdos and unfortunately most of them end up being our cousins

Anonymous said...

It is awful when families disintegrate like that. These days it does not take much for people to feel tremendous 'abhimaan' and not keep in touch or not invite someone to some family function or the other. I want to give you a hug for what you felt when Cousin T's whoever's servant came by to give you a card.
The only thing I can say is- leave them to their karma. Starting a marriage with this kind of ill-will is not the best thing, I guess.

Anonymous said...

Very strange. Everyone concerned.