Around three years ago, I decided to get married. From that day, I have dreamt of having a very big traditional Nepali wedding. I know every girl dreams to fall in love with their prince charming and have the biggest celebration possible, and I was no different.
There is a special reason why I mentioned 3 years. It is because before that I always thought marriage, especially Nepali traditional marriage, are made only so that men can transfer the job of cooking, cleaning and looking after them from their mothers to their wives.
I am not a feminist but I hate to be one of those wives so I decided that not getting married was the easiest way out. I even told my decision to my parents and they constantly tried to changed my mind. They always gave me all the reasons why marriage is good for me.
Growing up I was a tomboy with lots of male friends. I always found it is easy to make friends with boys than be with a bunch of girls. I do have some really good female friends but I was never a part of the girl group. Hanging out with boys was more fun and I was learning how to ride motorbike and how to play pool.
But things changed slowly when I came to Australia. I started liking dresses to pants and let my hair grow. I still remember my dad’s reaction when he saw me for the first time when I went back to Nepal for the first time after four years. I think seeing me with big earrings and in a dress made him realise that I was no longer a tomboy who had left Nepal four years ago. His exact words were “My daughter has grown up”.
Around 2006, I started getting invitations from my friends for their wedding. I used to ask them how they knew “he/she” was the one. They told me , they were happy with this person they have married. Even though marriage is not a piece of cake but it isn’t bad either. The weddings I went to were between Nepali – Indonesian, Nepali – Fiji Indian, Nepali – Pilipino, Nepali – Aussie, Nepali – Italian, or Nepali – Nepali. No matter who they were marrying ,one thing was common , they were all in love and extremely happy to be married.
Most of my close friends got married which meant that I was now hanging out with couples. Then I saw what was missing in my life. I saw the care and love they had for each other. They still had arguments, they still disagreed with each other on some things but at the end of the day, they cared for each other and they loved each other.
I wanted the love and care that you can only get from your partner. I liked the thought that “You are no longer alone and there is always someone looking after you.” When I was sure of what I wanted, I called my parents and let them know my decision. I think that was one of the best days of their life as they had been worried sick that I would end up as an old and miserable spinster.
Fast forward two years and I was in the middle of the chaos of my own wedding celebration. Almost a year of preparation from both the families, a few changes to the wedding dates, a twenty man band, almost 2000 guests, 10 day long celebrations and finally me and AS were getting married. It was loud, it was crowed, it was chaotic but I didn’t mind that. I was actually enjoying it. With the blessing of both the families and all our relatives and friends, we got married. One thing I learnt from this experience is that “marriage is not just about two people but it is about two families” – At least, it is in Nepal.