This is a story about love! Love winning over everything! Is it true that “LOVE” is all you need in life? I am uncertain of the answer to that question but this couple’s story might give you a different perspective.
This is a story of Andy and Ana. They requested me to not share their real identity as being anonymous would help them be more transparent. It was more important for them to share their story. If you read further on, you will probably get a better idea why they want to remain anonymous. The names are not real – But their story is real! Their pain is real! Their victory is real! Who knows they might give hope to all the lovers out there who are on the verge of giving up!
Andy is actually my high school buddy. I remember him as a shy, intelligent and decent boy. He was mischievous as far as I recollect but always a good boy. He was the kinda guy who would have a silent crush on a girl for years and yet not say a word. He was a very bright student as well. He would often get punished at the cost of his friends but always took it very light-heartedly. We never spoke after high school up until now but remained friends on Facebook.
From a shy boy that Andy was in school, to this dramatic love story! I was surprised. I wasn’t even aware that he was married. He met his wife – ANA in MBA college. Andy and Ana were in the same class. He found out that she too had graduated from the same college as him and that grabbed his attention. He observed silently (as he always does) and felt a strong connection with her. He got attracted to her warm and friendly nature and the way she carried herself. Andy had broken up just a few months ago, so for him liking someone again meant something
During a trek arranged by the college, they had the opportunity to spend more time with each other. The more time Andy spent with Ana the more he liked her. He gathered all the courage he could, pulled up his socks and asked Ana out! She acted like a tough cookie and said ‘NO’ as she thought Andy was only interested in a casual relationship. Andy was everything ANA DID NOT WANT! She wanted a guy who never drank alcohol, a non-smoker and a vegetarian! But ANDY lived for these things! Although he didn’t give up on her yet. He asked her out again and by his own confession lied that he will cut down on drinking, give up non-vegetarian food and quit smoking. He wanted her to spend more time with him so that she could get a chance to know him better and see he was more than just his bad habits and that he genuinely liked her. At last, she got convinced and JACKPOT – She said YES!
She tried to change him but he resisted. They bickered and argued as all couples do but the love was strong between them. They fell more deeply in love as time passed. It’s funny how we all have a checklist but when we meet someone we like; our brain starts firing these neurons and all kinds of chemistry and attraction comes into play and there goes the checklist to dogs!
Eventually, as time passed Ana’s parents found out about their relationship. A very nosy cousin found out about their weekend plans and blurted everything to Ana’s parents. They were completely against this relationship. They still had orthodox beliefs that a girl should marry only within their own caste and they were not very impressed by Andy’s lifestyle. Also, Ana’s brother managed to hack into their accounts and expose all their chat conversations to his parents. All this created a lot of misconceptions and Ana’s parents disapproved of this relationship vehemently more than ever.
They started putting a lot of pressure on ANA and mentally stressed her a lot. Ana was being emotionally abused and her brother even raised his hands on her a few times. Her father started blaming her for everything that was wrong in their lives. Anna was treated like a princess by her family and her brother was the best one could have, however, everything changed once her family found out about their relationship. All this paramount stress caused a lot of fights between Andy and Ana too. It was getting too much for her to handle and she slowly slipped into depression. She got driven to the point of so much suffering and angst that she started hitting and hurting herself. She was experiencing suicidal thoughts and her world came crumbling down right in front her eyes and she felt absolutely helpless.
Andy thought it was getting way too serious and was very concerned about Ana’s wellbeing. He felt she needed professional help. They decided to consult a doctor and that did help Ana to some extent but they really had to put in their heart and soul into the relationship to make it work. Finally, Ana decided she cannot be in this situation of uncertainty and suffering all the time. She gathered all the courage she had and decided to run away from home. In fact, sometime, before their marriage, they even broke up for two months. Andy was just not ready to compromise on his lifestyle and so much pain being caused to everyone and decided to let her go. However, he went back to her. These two months were horrible for Ana, she suffered from severe depression. She succumbed to her parent’s pressure to get married to another guy. Andy decided to reconcile just in time or else Ana would be married to someone else.
Once she left home, they got married and it’s been 4 years since then, she hasn’t looked back or spoken to her family. Andy tries his very best every day to replace her family’s love and make her as happy as he possible can but hasn’t succeeded yet. All the suffering Ana had to undergo really altered her personality and made her a more determined and headstrong woman. He tries to take her out for vacations, encourages her to do things she loves to do to fill the void in her life. Andy’s family too initially didn’t accept her completely into the family but with time Ana has managed to win their hearts. They are going strong together and yes obviously, they have their own challenges but they are each other’s world. Andy is everything ANA has and I think for her LOVE WAS ALL SHE NEEDED IN LIFE!
I am sure she thinks about her family every day but sometimes the people who love us the most cannot set us free to make our own decisions. Letting go requires paramount and immense strength. Not allowing children to make their own decisions and to learn from their experiences is the biggest mistake some parents make. I wish Ana’s parents tried to understand and reason with her – supported and trusted her enough to be with her even though they felt she was making a mistake
I know this is a story we have seen a million times in a million movies. But let me tell you one thing – it takes GUTS and CRAZY TRUE LOVE to leave your family and not look back. Real life sucks. Believe it or not, this is an issue that plagues many people. I think this has been shown in so many movies repeatedly that people underestimate the stress, pain and suffering it causes. I salute Ana for taking this bold step and placing so much trust in ANDY. The guy has to be so damn worth it and I am so happy ANDY and ANA found love in each other. In actuality, it is one of the most painful experiences to go through. I hope that Ana and her parents reconcile and see the bigger picture. Making anyone do anything against their will is wrong. We must find in ourselves the courage to let go. Holding on to someone or something tight is very easy but letting go is where your strength lies.
I hope we all find ‘Love’ worth fighting for! Fighting and how! I don’t know what Ana’s parent’s perspective is but I feel there is no problem on earth which can’t be dealt with love, patience, and reasoning. If nothing, seeing your child so unhappy should be reason enough to find a common ground and hold their hand through their mistakes even if you think they are wrong.
I truly wish Andy and Ana all the best in their lives and thank them from the bottom of my heart for sharing their story with me. They are truly the ‘HERO’ and “HEROINE’ of their own story.
I wish you guys a lifetime of happiness and harmony.