Culture vs. Me


3 months back I got a haircut… A haircut I did not especially want since I could foresee the troubles it would cause me later. It’s 3 months later and the dreaded day is here. The culture I was born into shall stare me in the eye, give me a disappointed look and make me feel ashamed of something I have no reason to be ashamed about. A haircut. It’s as simple and complicated as that. Because my faith in God lies in my tresses… no …scratch that… because my goodness of thought and purity of heart lies in the fact that I don’t cut my hair. And even to that, the irony is not the cutting of hair; per say…It’s how noticeable the haircut is.

So yes, when I was at home, with my parents and lived my life according to their sensibilities, the simple act of strategically cutting the hair was condoned. But now, I am independent. I am supposed to still uphold the value system they put in place. Only one problem with that. I made my own value systems. I chose faith in a non-judgmental God over religion. My culture bids me to follow norms, which are quickly turning obsolete. My family would want many things out of me. They have every right to, too. However, my sensibilities take precedence.

Study, Get a job, Get married, Have kids…

Learn to cook, be diplomatic, Wear suits, and Keep the hair long…

Live with parents, or roommates… A girl living alone! *wahe guru!!!!!!!*

Travel with family or friends… Travel alone! *wahe guru!!!!!!*

I was always going to defy them (my relatives) in all of their expectations of a good simple Sikh girl. Only I did not actually see it happening, in my mind’s eye. Now that the day is here, it makes me anxious… because these are the people who love me, and who have cared for me. Only it was not without conditions.

Today, I defy those conditions.

Today I chose Me over Them.

Today I chose My Individuality over My Culture.

Today…I shall reap the consequences.

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