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