Karwachauth always brings back fond memories. I remember the excitement of getting mehendi (henna) on my hands, imitating my mom, eating fenniyan (vermicilli made in desi ghee especially for this festival). And the best part was listening to my grandmother reciting the story behind this festival every year and all the women (including my mom) dressed up, listening to her patiently.
As I grew up and started understanding the logic behind this festival, I was confused on how all the educated ladies believed that a fast could actually help their husbands have a long life? I do not wish to offend anyone because coming from a very God fearing family, there are so many other fasts and rituals that I am a part of without understanding the logic behind them. Yes, we believe in all these festivals because we fear what may happen if we don’t abide by their rules. And again, I am one of that scared lot.
When I got married, my mother in law was too kind to give me the freedom of choosing whatever rituals I wanted to follow. She has never fasted for Karwachauth and left it on my discretion to choose if I wanted to or not. But I still chose to continue this tradition, why?
I feel closer to my mom
As kids we always want to be like our mothers. Having seen this festival so closely, I feel very close to her when I myself fast the way she does. In fact, last year on Karwacahuth, I was with her and woke up with to eat before sunrise.
I love dressing up
I am a minimalist when it comes to getting ready and wearing make up. After becoming a mom the dressing up has actually reduced a lot and I do not want to let go of any day which forces me to get ready and get out of my PJs.
I love the smell of fresh henna on my hands. I don’t care what colour it leaves but it make you look so beautiful.
My husband fasts with me
Or at least skips a meal because he knows that I am hungry(which I don’t want him to). He has never witnessed this festival while growing up and pays lot of attention to all the details. So I like his participation.
I may be actively participating in these rituals but I made a promise to myself that I would never encourage or force my kids to believe in anything that I do. I want them to take their own decisions and would respect every decision that they take for themselves. Also, I would never encourage anyone who is unwell to fast. Health is wealth and I am sure your husbands wouldn’t want an ill wife not eating anything and worsening her health.
I have been reading so many tips for pregnant women for Karwachauth. Dear expecting mothers, please do not burden your bodies by fasting. Your baby needs a lot of nutrition from you and by fasting you are putting your own health and that of your baby in danger.
PS: Apologies if I hurt anyone’s feelings. I have no grudge regarding any festival or ritual. All these opinions reflect my personal experiences
Do you fast on Karwachauth? Why or why not?
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