A year back, I visited a divorcee friend at her flat, who was in a live-in relationship. We giggled and chatted as we puffed cigarattes and ate bourbon biscuits. I was curious about her sexual life and inquired her about it. She clipped

‘My parents want me to remain celibate unless I vow marriage with him. I explained this to Gaurav (pseudonym) and he is so understanding. We stay in separate rooms. That’s his.”

She pointed to the other room that had a cabinet and an open garment rack loaded with boxers, briefs, vests, shirts, shoes, chinos and belts. Indeed all male stuff! I was gobsmacked. Really! How difficult it must be for a guy to resist sexual tension in the night with his sweetheart staying in next room. I naively believed and sighed! Maybe this is what they call a true love.

A year later, when she and I became more close, she confided – “My boyfriend has such a high libido. He wants sex every day.”

I realized she was guarded when she cooked that ‘celibate’ story in my earlier visit to her flat. She did not want an acquaintance to know about her private sexual life. Ok! I fail to understand this privacy that has made us isolated, calculated, constrained, and vigilant. Life has become a tightrope walk of striving hard to maintain that ‘perfect image’. I’ve done all of that and now I’m fed up with doing it. I want to live the attitude of a devil-may-care toddler, who can pee in his pants in full public view and yet chirp and run like chariots on fire.

I had this moment of epiphany two years back. It so happened that I drank half a gallon of water before leaving office and on my way the pressure mounted in my bladder. I remember clutching my vagina inside the dupatta in the metro to combat that urge but hardly succeeded. As I was about to reach home, the pain quadrupled and tears rolled from my eyes. I hated my gender that made it impossible to convert the road into a public urinary.

And don’t know how but suddenly! I realized that I was wearing a black pajama and thus decided to let myself free. I decided I’ll expunge this pain. I relieved in those pajamas just when I was 5 mins away from home. A warm stream trickled down and I felt liberated and happy and confident : )

Yes, all this shit of Privacy is going nowhere but will get decomposed with our bodies in our graves, our caskets, or will be charred with our bodies in cremation chambers. I do not want to get buried or charred with my dirty secrets. I want to be liberated while I’m alive. Thus no privacy, no secrets.