SUNDAY STORY- In my marriage, I chose my career over the motherhood. (Short Story)

Undermining your partner’s interest is the biggest mistake a couple can make.

It was Sunday evening and we were at our favorite restaurant for dinner. It was kind of a ritual for us to have dinner at this place every Sunday, but today was different, it was special. Today we got the report that said, I was pregnant and this made Aakash really happy.
He was in the parking lot looking for a nice place for the car and I was looking at him from a distance standing near the entrance to the restaurant. I noticed that Aakash had a different smile today and I was happy looking at him but nonplussed me was gathering myself to make him lose his smile.
“Come Riya,” he said opening the door.

“Reservation under the name Aakash Negi.” Aakash enquired standing in front of the receptionist.

“Mr. & Mrs. Negi.” he prompted. “Yes sir, your table will be ready in 5 minutes. You can wait on that couch till then.” the receptionist said.
We walked down some steps, Aakash was holding my left hand firmly and sat really close to me on the couch as if he was afraid of losing me. He was a bit more caring than usual. I liked him this way even more.

“You look, tense baby. Is there something?” he asked.
“No,” I said with a smile.

We were to mark 3 years of our marriage next month and in all these years, Aakash took care of me really well, it was like a father taking care of his daughter. Cannot be explained. My caring husband.

“Sir the table is ready.” the receptionist said as I was about to say tell Aakash everything.

He pulled out the chair for me like a true gentleman, which he was for sure. Immediately the waiter came and stood next to our table with a bottle of wine to which Aakash said “No.”
“What happened?” I asked looking at him as he denied the wine.
Aakash loves to drink. I came to know this while we were pursuing our engineering. He was my classmate then my boyfriend and now my husband.
“I’ll not drink.”
“Why?”
“We are expecting our first baby and I have this thing,” he said with little hesitation.
“What thing?” I asked, looking in his eyes.
“It’s kind of childish,”
“Are you going to say?” I said giving him a stern solid look.
“It’s more like a deal I made with God today, that I want our baby to be a girl and in return, I will stop drinking,” he said with a blush and the biggest smile.
I simply smiled looking at him and wondered how deep his emotions were and cursed myself for making a decision.

Food was on the table and I gathered all my courage,
“Aakash, I don’t want this child,” I said like a crass.
“What?” he was surprised. Admonitory in his voice.
“I never wished to have kids,” I said looking at his confused face.
“But you were happy with this, right?”
“No. That day even you told me to take contraceptive pills to avoid the unwanted pregnancy and now you suddenly want this child the most.”
“You understand what you are saying, Riya?” he said. “You are suggesting me to kill our baby,” he added.
“Don’t make it sound so harsh Aakash. I always wanted to excel in my career, my job, and everything. Being a mother is the last priority for me because these things stop my goals.” I said, almost choking.
Without saying another word, Aakash pushed his chair and got up to leave and left the car keys on the table for me. I wasn’t able to control and hold myself and eventually cried. I sat there on the chair like a statue for an hour with four more tables around me, people looked at me contemplating the case.

I didn’t call him. I simply drove myself home. The door was still locked, Aakash wasn’t home yet. I turned the keys and pushed the door.
Am I being selfish here? Questions flooded my mind after seeing the empty house. I can completely understand the ire but he too needs to understand me. I need time.
I went to the bed without changing into my nightgown and this time I fell asleep with the wet pillow.

It was 2 in the morning and I sensed Aakash pulling up the sheets over me, I hugged him and rested my head on his chest, his shirt was wet from the tears. I didn’t look at his face nor did he tried to, we sensed our pains and rested in each other.

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