At the age of 22, I got married and was confident to live my new life with my in-laws because I was sure that I would love them like I love my parents. I loved them, they loved me too like a daughter. Meanwhile, my husband and I were posted in the south of India. Living there was a happy time. We used to visit his parents and they used to visit us. Our life was going on smoothly and we were blessed with a daughter and a son.
One day, my mother-in-law got very sick and we had to rush to see her. We took care of her and she was fit again. This incident changed my husband's thoughts about living far away from his parents. After struggling for a couple of years, we shifted. Now we all were together and were happy to live together. My sister-in-law also lived in the same city. She used to visit us very often. I was busy with household chores and my mom-in-law and sister-in-law used to chat in her room. My father-in-law was happy reading books.
Then it all began. Slowly I was being criticized by my mother-in-law and sister-in-law. Initially I didn’t pay any attention, and felt like the odd one out in the family.
The criticism continued with angry faces and raised voices. They said things like I sleep too much, I didn’t make food on time, and so on. They stopped helping me and I had to take care of such a big family all by myself, with two little kids to handle. My husband used to be busy in his office till late evening.
A lot of tension was built up in the house. I used to answer back as well because how much can one go through, after all? Days had passed and I couldn’t handle all of this alone, so I told my husband everything. He couldn’t believe it. I told him a lot of things but he never had the nerve to confront his mother. When I couldn’t take all this anymore, I took up a job to be outside of the house. I was finally happy that I didn’t have to listen to taunts all day. Though, Sundays used to be a busy always, with mister and children around. The household work had to be divided and my mother-in-law did half of it because I was working. The criticism still continued as the mother-in-law had to work more. We had loud arguments and my father-in-law always tried to calm us down, but nothing really helped.
One odd day, my husband came back early from work. He was surprised to see my mother-in-law screaming. From that day onwards, my husband started believing what I told him. He always took my side and stood by me from then onwards.
This went on for almost 10 years. I cried a lot during that time. My health was down and I was declared a hypertension patient. Since then my sister-in-law visited lesser and my mother-in-law had almost stopped complaining. I slowly gained back my normal health, and maids were appointed to do household chores.
Finally, everything was going fine, my husband and children were happy. One fine day, my mother-in-law slipped in the courtyard and broke her bone. She was in the hospital for 20 days and I took leave from office to take care of her. She was recommended bed rest for 6 months. We all took care of her during this period.
One day when no one was home, she called me in her room and said “I am happy that you take care of me like this and I’m sorry for everything.” I smiled and hugged her. We both got teary eyed. My sister-in-law also apologized for creating misunderstandings between us. I gave her a hug too.
All is well when they end well!