A letter to Sridhar – 2016

one-year

To,

Sridhar Reddy
Aged 27 years 9 Months

Hey pal. It’s me, you from the future.

Yes I am 28 years 9 months old. Time inevitably moves only in one direction. The only way to fight the passage of time is by controlling the self. Age after all, is just a number.

All things considered, its going good. The Mrs. is happy, with me and with herself. We have no kids yet, and none are on the way just yet.

It has been a turbulent year, just as you predicted. Its difficult enough to learn to live with a new person when you have no past experience to bank on. My life has been made more difficult with various things happening with me and around me. I have learn’t a little about myself these past few months and I certainly have changed a lot.

Do I chronicle all of my difficulties this past year? Since its just you and things will stay between us, I will.

It all started with the marriage. I had a hard time arranging funds for the marriage. I got no help from dad whatsoever. I thought bro will help me out by being there for me. That didn’t happen either. I had to plan and arrange every small detail myself. I was so caught up arranging my marriage, I did not have the time to enjoy it.

One would think the weeks after marriage would be good right? Not for me. I was uncomfortable living with the in laws in the beginning. I did not have my own personal space and I felt like I was living in someone else’s living room. The Mrs. was oblivious to my discomfort and continued to live the way she was living before marriage,  which was irritating for me. We got into lots of fights in those first 2 months.

Then we had the problems with sex. At first I got to know I had a problem. I went through a surgery and spent a few difficult weeks thereafter. Then we realized even she has a problem. I felt the need to correct my problem. She does not. Even if she did, I’m not sure if there are ways to correct the problem. At first I thought, and I still think to a certain extent, that her problem is psychological. Whatever the case may be, sex has been a struggle and we got into lots of fights because of it.

We fought because she is untidy. We fought because I am stubborn about money. We fought about her lack of interest in changing her job. We fought because of her unwillingness to communicate with my dad. And then we fought about silly reasons. Just yesterday we had a fight about her thoughtlessness. I can count the number of weeks I haven’t made her cry on one hand. The number of weeks while I was in India that is.

We fight. But then we get back to each other. I don’t know if it is love. Sure we tell each other that we love each other. But what is love? All I know is that I cannot spend 2 full days being mad at her. I would go back to her and would apologize for my behavior even if I felt she is the one who was wrong. I would find a way to make her laugh. Then everything would be fine. Until the next fight.

I guess its a good thing all our fights have been for silly reasons. We never had a strong enough reason to stay mad at each other. Over the course of the last few months, I feel we have come to understand each other. The kind of things that bothered us in the past, don’t bother us much anymore. That does not mean its all rosy and gold. Like I said, we had a fight yesterday.

We cannot give each other all of the things that we want from each other. We both have to compromise about certain things. We are close enough that we tell each other everything. But most of the times we don’t really understand why something is so important to the other. Neither of us backs down. Both of us have strong egos. Both of us have flaws that we point out to each other. Neither of us likes to be reminded about our flaws. But we are still together. We fit. I don’t think there are a lot of women who would have handled my overbearing and controlling nature. I don’t think there are a lot of men who would have handled her childishness and general incompetence about certain things. We fight and we grumble but on most of the days, we kiss each other good night and we kiss each other good morning.

What other problems did I have? Oh yes, money! Ah man. Money. I don’t have aspirations of being rich. I would be satisfied if I had a small fixed income and I could invest to build our future. I am sick and tired of paying loans. I have spent all of my working life paying loans. I have spent most of my working life paying at least 2 loans. Finally I get married to a women who is working and who is earning a decent pay. What do I get along with it? More loans. Do you want to guess the reason why we fought yesterday?

For a man who likes to be in control of everything, not being able to see out the end of these loans is so frustrating. I get frustrated when I look at other people who earn more than I do. I get frustrated when I apply for jobs, prepare hard for them, and the only company who bothers to take my interview rejects me because I have a bad “attitude”. I get frustrated when I don’t get good work in the office. I get frustrated when I don’t see a rise in my pay. Most of all, I am frustrated because I have to keep my frustration to myself. Even the Mrs. does not really understand. Can someone please throw this dog a bone.

Even as I write this post, I can see its depressing. I will stop my rant because it has not been entirely bad. There have been good days too. I am lucky enough to have friends who I get to meet and spend quality time with most weekends. I have been on a couple of very good trips. I am planning to go to South Africa in November for what should be a very good trip.

Men often make the mistake of highlighting the bad things and not appreciating the good things. For all of my talk about having fights with the Mrs, we have spent very little time of our life fighting each other. Most of the time we are kind and loving towards each other. We have collected some good memories and have had some great moments. Regardless of how things turn out to be in the future, I am sure we will continue to accumulate good memories.

This is why when you ask me how things are going, I would all things considered, it is going good. In a weeks time, I will need to sit down and write another letter, similar to the one you wrote to me. Life is starting to ask me some very difficult questions, and starting today, I need to prepare myself to answer those questions. I hope I get some answers.

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