Since the day I remember, there was not a single day when they did not see it customary to argue with one another. In fact, my wake up alarm used to be one of them hurtling accusations at another followed by hot tears. There were days when I returned from school to a house full of sinister silence. At such times I wondered if mom had killed dad or the other way round. Thankfully, I was spared from that scene.
My parents loved me dearly. In spite of repulsion between them, they made sure I was not deprived of worldly things. They tried to make everything perfect for me. Only they never realised that more than material things in life and their individual love, I wanted to see them love each other. I wanted a home and not just plain walls and windows and negative vibes. Alas, I was never able to make them recognize my yearning for one.
You would wonder what I did when they fought. I was a silent spectator, praying for arguments to end. After all, my parents never forgot to teach me the right things in between their hatred. I was not supposed to speak when two adults were "in communication". Likewise, mom told me not to spill our household news to others. As a result, I had no one to talk to. My feelings ebbed and surged but remained bottled up, howsoever.
No issue was too small to arouse conflicts between them. They battled incessantly on the colour of walls to arranging finances. By the age of nine, I knew the intensity of each of their confrontations. While I hoped for the day when they would make peace with themselves and start mending their shattered relationship, their mutual loathing was turning passionate by the day.
For a very long time, I was the zip that kept them attached. But soon things started getting out of control - accusations were wild, words stung poison and disgusted glances at each other became so common that they pierced my soul. Even I could no longer be the clasp that hoped to bring them together.
Two months before I turned eleven, my mom shook me awake. Her eyes were red like I had seen them before.
"Wake up! We are going to grandma's place." she said. She did not think it was necessary to give me any details. Without asking any more questions I followed her out of the house. Dad was in the bedroom and did not even come to see us off. I sensed a familiar feeling, however this time there was a finality to it.
Dad did not come for my birthday. Mom had told him not to. She did not want to see him. I was never asked my opinion anyway.
A few months later, I found my mom sitting at the table brooding over a document. I guessed it right, it was the divorce notice. They were going to be separated for good.
I was torn between relief and tension, hatred and love, happiness and deep sorrow. It was difficult to say if I celebrated the moment or mourned it. My parents' missteps lead me to suffer. I had asked for freedom from daily domestic haggles, parents bargained it at the cost of our family.