Raghav, 31, works in a bank in Bhopal.
Poonam and I got married two years ago. Before she came to our family, there was only my mother and I. Dad passed away when I was in college. Mom stays at home with a domestic helper when Poonam and I go to work.
It was all going well. Then suddenly the lock-down happened.
Since our house help could no longer come home, we decided to take on one task each. Much against our wishes, Mom took up the cleaning duty saying, ‘Exercise ho jayegi. I will not miss my daily walks.’ Poonam was to be the cook. And I was the laundryman and the dishwasher.
We also stocked up on essentials, including lots of condoms.
With condoms, usually we had a bit of a routine. Since my mother usually emptied the household garbage bins, we used to wrap used condoms in a newspaper and kept them in our room till it was time for me to leave for work. Then on my way, I would drop them into the building’s common bin.
The first casualty of the lockdown was our condom disposal routine. With my mom in-charge of cleaning and garbage disposal duties, I had to think hard and fast.
So I made a plan. I told mom I’ll take care of the garbage duties. Thankfully, she agreed. Especially as I came up with an idea to dispose of the garbage without having to go down to the garbage truck. You see we live on the first floor. So I tied a rope to our dustbin’s handle and lowered it down when the garbage truck came. In that also went the used condoms!
My plan worked well for the next few days.
Poonam and I made love late that night. I wrapped the condom in a newspaper and left it in its usual place. But then got to work as I had an assignment to finish. I slept very late and woke up with the sound of someone sweeping the floor. I was immediately worried but pretended to be fast asleep.
True to my worry, mom found the used condom wrapped up in a newspaper lying under our bed. There was an eerie silence in the room for a moment. From the corner of my eye, I saw Mom open the newspaper and then immediately rush out of the room to throw her discovery in the dustbin in the common balcony. She said nothing but I felt as if I had been caught doing something wrong. ‘How could I be so careless!’, I cursed myself.
We went through the daily chores as if nothing had happened. Later that evening, after dinner, when mom had gone to sleep, I told Poonam about the incident.
Sex and sanskar
Poonam laughed and said, ‘Wait, now I know why she wanted to switch duties this afternoon! She said she wanted to cook and wanted me to take up cleaning instead. All this time I was under the impression that she wasn’t liking my cooking! I am kind of relieved’, she said, laughing out louder!
‘Of course, mom knows we are having sex. That’s nothing to worry about!’ she continued.
‘In fact, just yesterday, when we were watching Ramayan, she asked if we were planning a baby. But then quickly added it would be better to not risk a pregnancy during this lockdown’.
‘Isn’t it ironic she found a condom in our room just the very next day!’ Poonam was now rolling on the bed with laughter.
She then sobered up and said, ‘But I believe that our personal life should remain private and we should be more careful with disposing our condoms’.
I agreed that we (or rather I) had been careless. Poonam suggested we keep a separate bin in our bathroom and I empty it regularly. ‘That’s a good idea. Let me do that now!’, I said. As I was setting up the new bin, I smiled about the sanskar and sex combination over which Poonam and my mother bonded. In our small family of three, we don’t have anything to hide from each other. I felt happy about it.
Next day, mom came and tapped me on the shoulder. ‘Beta, please clear out the garbage bins. There are things in it I don’t wish to see,’ she said, and we all had a hearty laugh.
To protect the identity, the person in the picture is a model and names have been changed.