My mom loved the color red. Every morning she would be ready in a red saree with a red tika. No matter what she wore, she always had a touch of color red in her attire.
One day, all of a sudden this color vanished from her life. It went away with my father’s soul.
She had adorned the color all her life and all of a sudden, it was something that was not acceptable for her to adorn. The pain of losing her better half was and will always be there. However, the absence of red was always there to remind her of his absence. Probably, seeing her in white is very bitter to even remember. Until then, I had never realized the impact a color could have in a person’s life. My mom would dread to go out among the public with that white attire for a year. A mere glance of it would bring in several sad questions for her to respond to. This brought a constant feeling of loneliness and grief in my mom’s life. Red has left her. The color might not bother her anymore, but ever since, I have always hated the color red.
A year back one of my uncles in his forty’s lost his wife, my aunt. For sure his life wouldn’t be the same as it was when he was with her. However, no one could make out that he was a widower going by his attire. After a year, he got married again. It is a normal practice in our society. The widower’s life moves on. On the contrary, a widow’s life stops. It gets stuck behind faded colors. Even colors halt in life, no question of a life moving.
I have tried to change my mom but failed to do so. However, it’s not just my mom who fears the change. Every woman who has lost their other half has this fear inside. The selfish society bitterly criticizes those who have the courage to change themselves. And I get a mixed feeling of anger and disgust when women themselves are the ones who criticize the brave move of these single women.
Some people are tempted to teach cultural values and preaching about the sin of adorning red by a single woman. I request them to either drain all the red blood that flows through the single women or admit that it’s a sin and utter foolishness.
Now I have been married for nearly two years. I try to boycott this color as much as I can with a hope and effort that someday the society would change and red would not stand as a symbol just for married women. I have had complaints about not being in red, I have been requested to wear red, requested to look married, criticized for trying to act modern and also been requested not to make fuss on such small matters and instead wear red for everyone’s satisfaction. However, I refuse to admit that this is a small matter. The pain this color can bring to a woman’s life is overlooked.
Red is a color of blood and love, which is inseparable from any creature. Don’t make red stand as a color of difference, let it symbolize love and power!