I was born and brought up in a nuclear family in Sri Lanka. We are a family of four: my parents, me and my younger brother. The school days offered me a lot to learn. I had a good academic life along with sports, and dance. Throughout my school time, I was never sure about what would I do with my life, or what would I study once I am a school leaver. I always believed that “time” would help me to decide with what I should do. I also believed that my interest would guide my choice of education. In my opinion, education without interest is pointless, solely because without interest one can never excel in any field.
Unfortunately after my high school, making a decision about what I would be was difficult. However, I’ve always had a great affinity towards Political and legal issues and I had found myself to be good at public speaking, so I decided to go to Law College. This was the first decision which I have ever made in my life. It gave me several unforgettable memories and experiences to learn about the world. My whole relations along with my parents resist sending me to the Law College. After listening to their objections that legal work is not a proper profession for young girls and it will hamper the women hood in future. Sadly most of the women lawyers’ lives that lived in my home town were threatened during that period. Though I heard a lot of scaring news from my parents, at last I could be able to convince my parents and got the admission to study in the Law College.
Ever since I decided that investigating legal issues should be my choice, I made attempts to pay closer attention to the legal issues which violate my own community with in the country. As I mentioned, Change is inevitable in everyone’s life, I would not be able to avoid the time of change in my life as well. For me it comes at the age of 19, particularly, during the time you do not know how to deal with a situation where you lose the person who had guided you and been your side as a shelter for you. Still I find difficult to forget that day, and I cannot realize that the day will break my future hopes and expectations.
I can still remember the next day of the New Year evening around 5.30PM, one of my cousins who were used to be my chess coach and good friend came to see me and asked me to go with him to the beach. This is the point I always think that, there could have been a backspace key to go back the moment which today it has made me to regret. If I would have given a company, today I would not have missed him forever, but unfortunately that day made a huge turning point in my life. Exactly at 6.30PM I received a call from my cousin who I have missed today, mumbling something which I could not be able to hear and I did not believe till now that was going to be his last word ever. By the time, my brother came from outside and was telling to my mother that the situation outside is not safe because people were talking about a shooting noise came from the beach side. So, now you can guess what was happened. Along with my cousin 5 of his friends were shot to death by the Sri Lanka Special Task Forces at the beach side. My cousin who died in that shooting is the person lit my life’s candle and he is the one who blew that. Yeah, from childhood he used to be my guide, he taught me to think positively and to be a self learner and to stand on my own legs. Briefly if I put in to one sentence, he was the first person who taught me to be confident on speaking up and to be courage enough to face this cruel world. At the end, he gave me the braveness to bear his death. Somehow, I got the chance to see him for the last moment and I believed that he saw me as well.
Anyway, I need to accept the fact that he has passed away and left me in the middle of my life. So after months, the case of their murder was hidden by some people who are in power. However, my family got threaten in order to not to run the case in the court. Still I was strong enough to get the justice for my cousin’s death; I personally felt that if each minority people in my country start to hide the truth rather than disclosing it to the world, then each minorities cannot get freedom or equal rights within the country. But my parents considered my future and in a way they begged me to leave the country. I did not have any options except leaving the country. In the beginning I strongly said to my parents that I will not the leave the country until I see the verdict of my cousin’s murder, but still I can remember that words from my parents saying to me that they no longer have the strength in their hearts and body to lose another precious soul from the family again. That was the big issue which made me to leave the country.
Earlier days I have told to my parents that I will not leave Sri Lanka, but nowadays I used tell them that I will not return to Sri Lanka back for my career. After coming to Asian University for Women I have changed a lot in terms of only worrying about my cousin and feel lonely about myself. However, my cousin’s murder took my whole future goals away from me which I had never thought of. When someone says changes I used to think only in positive way, however, after my life has changed me, I do feel changes can be in both ways. I would like to share a quote with you all which he has used to tell me that “No matter what you do, bad or good, people are always gonna have something to say about it. Just remember this: If people always have something to say about your life, that's saying little about their own. Keep your head up, stay strong, and just breathe and Live. If you needed some encouragement keep it minds I’m always with you, So don't worry face the challenge in your life and most importantly learn from it.