Till I entered the college I was living under the umbrella of the warmth of my parents. We are 2 sisters and we were raised oblivious of the fact that the upbringing of girls is different from that of boys. I helped my mom in the kitchen from 10 years of age. And, that’s not because she asked me to but because I wanted my mom to get free quickly and play with me. I hammered nails into the wall, I changed sockets and plugs and nobody stopped me because I truly enjoyed doing it. I helped my dad in carrying heavy grocery bags. At 15, I went to the sabji mandi all alone to buy vegetables because my dad was on tour. I stood in long queues of SBI to deposit a cheque and even came back from tuitions at 10 PM. I tried my hands-on cooking and failed miserably and never wanted to try it again. I took Mehendi classes, swimming classes, embroidery classes, karate classes and what not. Every vacation my interest changed. I did all of that and much more and nobody tried to influence my interests and ideas.
By the time I reached college, I realised that there was a wave of feminism, especially because it was an all girl’s college. Girls wanted to do everything that boys did and girls were refrained from. It was a challenge for them to bag the highest package of campus, dump it, get into a premier MBA college and flaunt it in front of Sharmaji ka beta. Most of them were sent to an all girl’s college because ladki ko padhana toh hai but co-ed mein nai. Tasks that were normal and routine for me were taken up as a challenge by my batchmates. Just to come at par with men! Just to prove that daughters are no less. So much so, just to beat the man?
Post-MBA, I thought job life would be different where I would meet ladies who are happily empowered and not running a race. I met many superwomen. They wore beautiful smiles and dressed perfectly. They drove cars, stayed in office till 9 PM, shopped on their own and did everything the society believes empowered women should do. But a few months down the line, most of them cracked down over a cup of coffee. Some were working because in-laws and hubby considered it prestigious, some because they had to support the family, some because they didn’t want to waste their degree. Some were earning well and yet didn’t have any control over the financial decisions at home. Others worked so committedly to their work that their health took a back seat.
Everybody had a problem and to all of them, I just said 1 thing, “It’s ok to be tired at the end of the day. It’s ok to falter and fall. It’s ok to make mistakes and learn from them. It’s ok to be sad. It’s ok to cry and vent it out. It’s ok to shout and it’s absolutely ok to lose your temper. It’s okay to be demotivated and dejected. But it is not ok to be depressed every single day. It’s not ok to think about running away from your life every single day. Incase u get such thoughts, just run away from it for some time. If you are a corporate, take leave from your organization. If you are a SAHM, try helping some friend in her business, hire a maid to cook for somedays or whatever u want to run away from. Runaway from it and see if your heart wants to go back to it. Don’t follow a path just because the society or family expects u to. Follow your heart only to do what it expects you to. Be it family, friend or any responsibility, your heart should accept it. Start living life on your terms and not that which is dictated by others.
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