A few years ago, I had gone to see a play in London. It was written by a female Bengali author, and it was about three different women’s stories. Three different women who migrated to (if memory serves me correctly) England upon marriage and how they coped with their new lives in completely different surroundings. One of them had a very supportive husband and one of them did not. They struggled with the ‘foreigness’ of things that are not foreign to me. At the time, I thought that this was a very common story but surely one that could not apply to me ever. I was already ‘in the West’ already spoke the language, knew the ways. I have ample moving experience and travelling alone experience. I know how to read maps and figure out bus routes, jump on coaches and negotiate.
Also, why would I, as an independent woman, ever move to another country only for marriage? Surely my husband and I would work out where it is best to live and work. Even when I decided to move to the US, it did not occur to me that I was a little bit like these women. I mean moving here was my choice too, it seemed like the next step to take, the next adventure was meant to be here. It didn’t occur to me that this time I was moving not to a new job or new school but to a new man. It also didn’t occur to me that the changes would be so different that I would indeed feel frustrated at them. I did not realize that I would wind up so dependent on my husband; with no public transport and nothing within walking distance, all my comings and goings are through him. Never mind that he bends over backwards to make me feel comfortable or that we do exactly what I like, the irony of the situation doesn’t fail me. So here I am living a stereotypical life of some desi woman who only steps out with her man. Husband dear did remind me that it is only temporary and soon I’ll be so busy doing the groceries alone, running my own errands and working.
The borderline loneliness and boredom I did anticipate however. I had thought it might be worse so I am doing well in terms of my own predictions. I rarely miss anyone and I don’t seem to have any problems there, it just seems that I have sadness creep over sometimes, in the form of a bad mood or in my dreams. In my dreams, the attachment I feel to people and my old life isn’t the same as in my waking life.