How are those last few days of being single? How does it feel to be slowly, but surely, stepping towards a completely different life? A life you have anticipated for a long, long time. A life of uncertainty, expectations of joy and the security of being loved. This is the story of two such couples, both passing the blissful days before they are announced man and wife, having already made the transition between being just girlfriend and boyfriend to being fiancés. This is their story of being utterly engaged.
The first couple are two bankers whom we will know as Posh and Macho (they chose their own undercover names!). They are engaged to be married this December and Posh says she is overwhelmed by the wedding preparations. “During this interim period, thoughts about the wedding ceremony really do take up a lot of your attention,” she says, “It's like at day time I think about the wedding and at night I think about the marriage.”
The second couple are two doctors, Ishrat and Bidat, engaged to be married in March next year. Ishrat states how the ring on her hand makes her feel happy and safe. “Every morning I wake up and think about all the work that needs to be done. Then I glance at the ring and I just get lost in the upcoming future. The way I think has completely changed; now I think in twos. I don't think about me but us, I don't think about my family but our family.”
When asked about how their personal interaction has changed, Posh said that she is more demanding now. “Before I used to be hesitant about providing my views but now I act as cute as I want to and ask for everything that I want!”
Posh says their range of topics have become more grave at one end with discussions about money matters and living together while at the other end it is 'crazy sweet' with Macho promising to pamper her silly. Ishrat says, “He is more mature and responsible now, he already treats me like a wife. We talk about all the real stuff, income, career, future and of course, the wedding ceremony.”
She too apparently is able to exert greater authority upon Bidat now. “I told him, now that your family has expressly accepted me, you are secondary. I tell him that if he doesn't listen to me I will go straight to his mother, and he acts scared."
The men state that the difference in their interaction is mainly in the degree to which their fiancés have opened up. “I think the emotions are the same but the expressions are more real and mature,” says Macho, “There are things which I don't even have to expressly say anymore”. Bidat says that Ishrat relays her apprehensions to him more now and he has to calm her fears. “It's understandable. Her life is about to change drastically and she has questions about everything, questions which I must be able to answer and answer wisely.”
Both couples talk about how the best part is the acceptance by their families and their families shared joy in the union. “No more sneaking out,” says Ishrat. “I can talk to my mother about everything now.”
Posh talks about how her dad gives her weekly lessons about how to look after a household and such other matters, “I am completely clueless about these. In my mind I think that I will lead my own life and the house will run in auto gear. Apparently things don't work that way!”
Both ladies find the notion of such utter independence scary to an extent. “If you think about it, leaving the security of your home, your family and going off somewhere completely alien is simply scary,” says Ishrat. “I have blocked that part completely from my thoughts,” Posh says, “Because the moment I think about leaving my family, my excitement evaporates.”
The one trivial matter which seems to bother the ladies is where they would hang their towels to dry in the new house after they shower! Posh is also worried about her nightly Vaseline applying routine while Ishrat worries about sharing a room with another person because she is a light sleeper “but when I think that I will be able to see him all the time it makes me very happy.”
The men also have distinct changes in their behaviour and thought process. “Now I think about furniture and curtains or that I will have to buy a car,” says Macho. “I think about the tiny details which will keep her comfortable, like installing an IPS connection in the bathroom so that she can always iron her hair.” Both men also talk about how the best part is the happiness their fiancés seem to be experiencing and their excitement about the weddings. “I don't think I would have been able to survive through such lengthy, detailed conversations about saris and stage decor before,” says Bidat “Now I am an active participant and it pleases me how she is always so excited about these.”
In preparing for the marriage they are all reanalysing themselves. “I have organised myself better and am striving to be at my best in my new life,” says Ishrat. “I am just prepared to be flexible because I know my life will change drastically and my priorities will need to reshuffle as well,” says Posh. “I am working to control my temper issues and ensure that I don't sound dominating as these things may be bearable from afar but not when you are living in very close proximity,” says Macho. Bidat is constantly thinking of ways to raise his income as he believes that her income is hers only while his will have to support them both.
So what are their expectations from each other after they are married?
Ishrat hopes that her husband will stay a friend and not become a guardian, that he will help her adjust to the new environment. Macho is worried about ensuring she has a comfortable standard of living and that he is able to provide whatever she is used to. “In today's world the men need to be more sacrificing in marriage without feeling like they are sacrificing. Our fiancés are independent and just as good as we are, if not better, so you need to ensure that she doesn't feel pushed into doing anything.”
Here's wishing the very best to these two couples ready to take up the challenge.
By Raisaa Tashnova
Photo: Sazzad Ibne Sayed
Model: Esha, Zunaid