With confusion still lingering in her mind,Shwetha finished her official work and headed back home,picking Pooja on the way.As usual,Pooja launched into a cry complaint about ‘Daddy’. Shwetha had had enough.
Not that Shwetha’s affection for Pooja had become lesser. But her persistent nagging about ‘Daddy’ had got on Shwetha’s nerves.
When gentle cajoling didn’t work,Shwetha resorted to threats,’See Pooja,No Daddy for you. Shouldn’t think about it. Understand?’.
Pooja looked up at her with tear filled eyes and asked,’But Why?’.
Shwetha didn’t have an answer.
‘Of course,why should Pooja not have a Daddy?’,thought Shwetha.
Her inner conscious admonished her. ‘Just because you don’t want to commit yourself,why should Pooja be denied the affections of a father’. Yes,correct.
But what can be done now? She really had no idea what to do about it. The very thought of marriage scared her. She had never had a boyfriend. The only man who came somewhere close to it was Arjun,whom she had rejected a few years back.
Shwetha’s mind drifted back two years ago. It was the time when her mother had died,leaving her all alone. Pooja had not yet come into her life.
That was the time she had met Arjun.Arjun was the son of a family friend. They had met a couple of times at some family functions. Arjun had liked Shwetha the moment he saw her itself. Ditto with Shwetha. He had proposed to her shortly after their first meeting. Shwetha,already reeling from one tragedy to another,was just not in a mind-frame to think about love or marriage. Not that she did not like Arjun. She did a feel a magical attraction towards him. But caution overtook optimism. Her sister’s tragic ending due to a love affair had shaken her immensely. What if Arjun behaves the same way like her sister’s lover. What if he ditches her. She couldn’t bring herself to trust any man’s affection. She had castigated herself,’All men are selfish and spineless. Better stay away from them.’
In the meantime,her relatives had made some half-hearted attempts to get her married. She had politely told them to back-off.
She was educated,intelligent and confident enough to stand on her own feet. She didn’t need any guy to support her. She could take care of herself. Yet she wanted to have a family and feel loved. So the best way,she reasoned,was to go in for adoption. She had to overcome many legal hurdles and social prejudices before she could finally adopt Pooja. But it was all worth it. Pooja made her life special. And she thought,she made Pooja’s life special. But now, she was having second thoughts about it. Was she really making Pooja happy ?
Maybe she should have accepted Arjun. After all,she had also liked him. He was an intelligent and kind man,no doubt. She had heard about how he volunteered to help her locality people during last year’s floods. And oh! he did look handsome. She tried to brush away her thoughts,but inside she knew that she admired his good looks too. She didn’t want to admit it to herself but that was the truth. She could feel a tinge of red creep up her cheeks whenever she thought about him. But is it the right decision?. What if his family rejects me? Will he still be ok to marry me? Moreover,it was two years now. Who knows if he is still single? She had not kept in touch with him for a long time now.
Shwetha’s thoughts were interrupted by the calling bell. She went to answer the door.
She almost fainted. Arjun was standing near the door.