My Vision - A Journey as a Voice of Our Future

Merlin James
Posted April 28, 2013 from India

After three consecutive abortions aunt Catherine was allowed to have her first baby being a boy. Her third abortion risked her life which her husband was least bothered about. She represents the thousands of women in India, so many years of marriage, with a tough heart but suffocating inside with scars, burns and bruises all over telling tales of brutality.

My elder aunt burnt herself to escape the hands of her husband, left with three little toddlers and no one to care for.

I was determined to be very careful in choosing a husband since I have learnt from the past. But when it came to me I was no exception. In the first year of marriage I jumped from the first floor damaging my spine and bones leaving me bedridden for months.

I envision a world where no woman tries to end her life this way. I dream of a world where the men realize the truth that no seed can sprout without the womb.

Looking back, my life as a young woman, an energetic and dedicated social worker among the girls and children, there was no time to stand and stare. Our project was extended to three southern states of India covering almost fifty villages each. Training children and adolescents to be the leaders of their community, fighting against challenges of survival -it was like dancing on the rope. But my satisfaction of achievement was priceless.

Somewhere in the middle there were some twists and turns that put me down, thoroughly bruised and scarred rendering no time to salvage and kept me in the dark tunnel. My energy drained and the soul dried, I was shrinking to fit in. The picture of my two little girls revitalized me. Now the energy level was overwhelming ready to fight back, to roar against all atrocities burying us alive.

An ambitious woman is a rebel and a trailblazer. She seeks to define the meaning of her own life and her own damn self – rather than be defined by others. She comes to her own terms with womanhood. I envisage each woman to be that ambitious woman in my community.

As per a recent survey G-20, India has been ranked as the worst place to be a woman. The lives of many girls and women in India are constantly subjected to violence which includes female foeticide, sexual harassment, domestic violence and gender inequality, which is the country's stark reality.

I see a world where every country proves to be a safe haven for women. I see a world where every girl child is educated, respected, empowered and celebrated. I envision true freedom and that is when a woman will walk on the road on her own at midnight. Easier said than done. But the picture is no more bleak to me.

There’s something in every woman that objects to injustice. But when she sees it happening to the most vulnerable, there’s an innate quality in her that rises against it even more fervently.

And how does this vision fit into the VOF?

World Pulse is that brightness flashing upon me at the end of the tunnel directing me to renewal, a new avatar. It urged to register my voice, pen down my thoughts, share my feelings, cry out aloud, shout and be all that I was and I am. It paved a new way to start an organization of my own to realize my dreams. For the first time I started to write, document my activities and results which I had never done before. WP made me realize that only when I raise my voice, I am heard. When this voice reached another from that side of the globe it echoed with more power and enlightened that local problems can find global solutions.

We should put ourselves out there, and speak up, because when we tell our stories, we give others permission to tell their stories, and bring depth and diversity to the public discourse.

I strongly believe, through the window of VOF I see my vision shaping up and taking me towards my destination of bringing life to the voice of the voiceless.

Voices of Our Future Application: Your Vision

Comments 42

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Petunia007
Apr 28, 2013
Apr 28, 2013

I was moved as I read this. It's touching to read the struggles of women all over the world, straining to get out of painful circumstances. You have already found your voice. Please don't stop using it. It is your power. Thanks for sharing.

Merlin James
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

Thanks for those words, am made sure again and again that i am not alone. Thanks for reading the post.

Love

Iryna
Apr 28, 2013
Apr 28, 2013

Dear Sharontina, You are making a great work, supporting women and girls in India! Thank you for the story, it's inspiring!

A hug, Iryna.

Merlin James
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

Inspiration we all share here. Thanks Iryna.

Love

Maya Norton
Apr 28, 2013
Apr 28, 2013

Sharontina, every word of this story, your story, was powerful. I felt privileged to be reading it.

~ Maya

Merlin James
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

I feel privileged too, to get such wonderful audience, wonderful sisters.

Love

Activechica
Apr 28, 2013
Apr 28, 2013

Sharontina,

You have witnessed much in your life. Your decision and efforts to stand up and change what you can, when you can to make the world safe for all, is truly inspirational and makes me realize that we all need to do more.

Thank you for all that you are doing.

Merlin James
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

i believe that when each one's role is played perfectly the mission is accomplished in a better and faster way. But the question is are we taking up that roles. It is something to do with the commitment that each one should carry towards contributing to the society. i hope you and me are doing our bit.

Love

Aminah
Apr 28, 2013
Apr 28, 2013

Thank you Sharontina for sharing your journey - at least a bit of it. And I believe, what you have shared is your strength. Your commitment, your dedication to bring positive changes to women's lives, I am sure stems from the atrocities that you have witnessed & lived.

It touched my heart deeply to read about your aunt. It's just so cruel to be forced to abort a child that grows in you. Unbelievable how a human can decide to terminate another human's life. H But I guess, the unbelievable do happen. And it remains unbelievable because we don't experience it. Through sharing, we come to know of such atrocities that takes place. Through this journey were learn and grow to truly address these issues. To overcome them, to educate people towards humility and humanity.

Keep writing. and I wish you all the very best.

Merlin James
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

I should thank you too dear Aminah for letting me know and rather ensuring me that i am not alone in this wild world. Got to learn so much to deal with this wretched life because of somebody when we are not responsible yet we are held responsible. Lessons to learn and to teach in return. yeah, a long journey and hope the end is full of hope and love and joy, oh....... why wait for the end, let us take this opportunity, this very moment to cherish them in us.

Much love

Sangita Thapa
Apr 29, 2013
Apr 29, 2013

Well said dear Sharontina! All men need to realize that no seed can sprout without the loving womb of a mother. I am sorry for whatever your aunt and you went through in life but im much happier to find you so determined, so passionate about your visions and dreams. May God grant you all the courage and perseverance to fight for justice. I wish you all the best. Everytime I read your writings, it reflects a sense of strength and power. Thank you so much for being so inspirational dear sister.

Merlin James
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

Dear Sweet Sangita,

I am glad that i do create that sense of power in a person and a lovable darling as you. You remain close to my heart, traveling together in this never ending journey. Distance can create a gap, but it is bridged by the wonderful sharing of words which instills power and energy mutually. So lets continue sharing and caring dear.

Much love

Aysha Ibrahim
Apr 29, 2013
Apr 29, 2013

very true WP provide us opportunity to cry out aloud what we cant in our life we keep tolerating things and left all alone. no shoulder to cry but like true friends it has given us opportunity to pour out our heart. I hope soon you bring life to the voice of voice less. best of luck

Merlin James
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

To be frank, i have never had an opportunity to shout, cry and roar as i have done now here with you all, with WP. My gratitude and love always remains high. I can never forget how my voice is sharpened and loud with the wonderful souls of WP including you my dear.

Much love

Aysha Ibrahim
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

Thank you :-) Stay in touch

keronga
Apr 29, 2013
Apr 29, 2013

Your story is quite moving. Every child deserves an opportunity to life. Life starts at conception. Together we shall overcome this! Keep the faith

Merlin James
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

Thanks for being with me.

In love and peace

Olanike
Apr 29, 2013
Apr 29, 2013

Thank you for sharing your story Sharontina, you are grace, strength and determination impersonified; and you remain an inspiration.

Greengirl

Merlin James
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

You too my dear Greengirl, your words can move mountains.

Love

Lortoria
Apr 29, 2013
Apr 29, 2013

This was an awesome read! I'm sorry for all the pain you have suffered, but my God, it's a testament to your strength. This part was just music to my ears: "An ambitious woman is a rebel and a trailblazer. She seeks to define the meaning of her own life and her own damn self – rather than be defined by others. She comes to her own terms with womanhood. I envisage each woman to be that ambitious woman in my community."

To be honest there was many good parts. Love this!

Thank you

Merlin James
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

Dear Lortoria,

Thanks for the love and for listening to my music.

Love

Nelly Bassily
Apr 29, 2013
Apr 29, 2013

Dear Sharontina,

What a story you have! I'm not married nor do I think I want to be (not according to the traditional idea of it anyway) but I know that no woman should suffer in a relationship. I'm sorry you had to live through such pain. And, I think you shouldn't listen to the G20 report. With women "trailblazing for change", I'm convinced that India will rise above the statistics because there are women who are seeking change.

It seems, whether you live in India or Canada, a woman's womb is a battlefield. Sadly, the fight is not fair but we will rise above it.

Merlin James
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

Dear Nelly,

Let's convert this battlefield into a bed of roses, and let there no more be curses but blessings to have born in that womb as a girl, as an angel.

Love

Merlin James
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

Thank you Taha,

Much love

libudsuroy
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

Hi, Sharontina, again comes this amazing revelations from you that teem with lessons of hope and tenacity. Your stories are always a blessing. You upturn the dark earth so we can see the seeds sprouting and growing again. Thank you so much for this generosity, this sharing of all these stories from the very beginning.

Merlin James
May 02, 2013
May 02, 2013

Dear Libudsuroy,

Thanks for reading my post dear. I believe that the curses of the past in one's life has become blessings of the now and future for another since they have also become good old lessons to teach. There was much much pain and sadness as i wrote the last journal, and i was searching for words. In fact, i had so much to tell pertaining to this chapter.

Thanks for listening.

Love

Debra K Adams, MA
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

your motivation is palpable, I can feel it, too! i wish to be a support for you as go forward on your path to your goals, please star in contact. If I can be a resource someway, please, only ask!

Merlin James
May 02, 2013
May 02, 2013

Dear Debra, I am motivated too of your encouraging voice. I am greatly honored that there is a voice and a helping hand on the other side of the globe. You are a wonderful sweetheart.

Love

Klaudia
Apr 30, 2013
Apr 30, 2013

Dear Sharontina

The best places to live are still to be built by us. Just keep rising your voice on behalf of those girls and women suffering violence and inequality.

I liked "An ambitious woman is a rebel and a trailblazer". I agree we have to be revolutionary rebels in order to improve our lifes and our people´s. We still have a long way to go, but we'll eventually get it.

Keep doing this amazing work!!! Klaudia

Merlin James
May 02, 2013
May 02, 2013

I liked " We still have a long way to go, but we'll eventually get it" That sounds more positive and energizing to me. Yes we should be rebels to bring that change in the lives of many who have forgotten that they have a voice. Thanks for the voice dear.

Love

Minakshi Tripathy
May 02, 2013
May 02, 2013

Dear Sharontina, I am thrilled by reading it. Keep up the spirit of writing.You write very well. I am dreaming with you . Love, Minakshi

Merlin James
May 03, 2013
May 03, 2013

Dream of a New World Governance where women have their say, where every voice matters and where every voice is registered.

Thanks for being there dear Minakshi.

Love

Lisa T
May 04, 2013
May 04, 2013

Sharontina,

Thank you for sharing your story. It was a pleasure to read. The imagery you use in this piece is powerful, especially the emotional descriptions in the opening. When writing about your vision and how VOF can help you achieve that, I was intrigued by the line, "It paved a new way to start an organization of my own to realize my dreams." I was curious to know more about your organization and what your work entails.

I look forward to reading more of your writing in the future!

Sincerely, Lisa

Merlin James
May 06, 2013
May 06, 2013

Dear Lisa,

Thanks for leaving your valuable comments here. This feedback column is really a great encouragement to a writer like me especially when i receive one from a person like you. Yes i have made an initiative with registering a trust for women, youth and children called "VOICES" where every voice will matter and i dream of creating an impact changing the lives of the ones who will no more be called victims of domestic violence, abuse or rape but rather be changemakers for themselves and for the community. I see it as a network so that it can sustain on its own in the long run. I am using the concept of neighbourhood community network so that each street, village, district and the state is networked from bottom to top.

I will come up with more stories.

Love

Wendy Stebbins
May 05, 2013
May 05, 2013

Great job, Sharontina.

<3

Wendy

Merlin James
May 06, 2013
May 06, 2013

Your response has made my day dear Wendy. And i am waiting to get the readable version of your book. Am still under treatment and so have some time to make it.

Love

Wendy Stebbins
May 06, 2013
May 06, 2013

Thanks Sharontina,

I thought she had dwonladed it to you. I'll email her again.

Hope the treatment is helping and that soon all will be well.

Love,

Wendy

Merlin James
May 07, 2013
May 07, 2013

Thanks.

<3

J écoute
May 05, 2013
May 05, 2013

Thank you for sharing your story and your vision for a better, just, world.

J'écoute

Merlin James
May 06, 2013
May 06, 2013

Thanks for stopping to go through the journal.

Cali gal Michelle
Jun 01, 2013
Jun 01, 2013

Dearest- I just realized that I never commented on this entry. It is beautiful. Haunting. It holds painful hope. I know it is a lot for you to share your personal story, but I know you affect others and encourage them to share their heart as well. You have unbelievable courage and astounding perseverance. Your talents blend with your vision, allowing you to attain your goals as you move through your life.

I know at times it seems bleak. I want you to hold on to the knowledge that you are heard. To the knowledge that you are changing lives. You are your avatar.

The last paragraphs of this entry are so beautifully written, and truly tell the heart of World Pulse. I will not ruin your words by adding mine.

Thank you for touching my life.

Merlin James
Jun 03, 2013
Jun 03, 2013

It is always a booster to get a comment from you. I am glad that it is an encouragement to let others share their stories. Thanks for that assurance that i am heard and that is all i need - to be heard, to be listened to, coz that is the first step towards change.

Love

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