“After 30-years of marriage and a successful professional career do you not have one piece of meaningful relationship advice for me?” I asked my mother. It was a pleasant Sunday evening and she had gently nudged me to find a life-partner. Of course, she had a girl in mind.
A “well-educated” girl from a “well-off” family- WELL. Been there, done that and learnt that wealth and education have little, if any, correlation with happiness. I tried to explain to her what qualities I am looking for in a partner, but the conversation ended with both of us confused and upset. Immediately afterward, I sat down and wrote this heartfelt article for her and for myself. Perhaps you can share this with your mother too and come to a common understanding.
Don’t tell me about her alma mater, mom. Tell me how generously she deals with differences. The way she is able to find a common ground and help two opposite camps co-exist- respectfully. Will she let the other side have a win, without conceding a loss?
Don’t tell me about her family’s economic status, mom. Tell me about the time she pursued her passion despite several obstacles and discomforts. Will she invest in our relationship even when the return on investment might seem low?
Don’t tell me about her rich taste, mom. Tell me about the time she choose to forgo that dress or that trip because she believed in simplicity. Will she be willing to put her family’s needs ahead of her wants?
Don’t tell me about her fair skin, mom. Tell me about the tenderness of her heart. When she displayed kindness to the waiter or the salesman who had shown no courtesy to earn it. Will she treat me with kindness, in my dark moments, when I least deserve it?
Don’t tell me to marry a Hindu or a Muslim, mom? Tell me about the sagacity of her thought. The way she can put aside dogmas and retain composure, despite heat and stress. Is she a maker of wise decisions?
Don’t tell me how she will fit in, mom? Tell me how she will stand out. The way she will take nothing but our best efforts in return for her love and affection. Can she go from one discomfort zone to another without losing hope?
Don’t tell me to get married, mom. Tell me to wait, as long as it takes, to find her.