Thanks to you my challenges without you I would not know my strengths

Sister Zeph
Posted October 24, 2017 from Pakistan

Each person has someone to be thankful for their support, love and care in the time when he/ she was feeling alone, saw no hope in life, wanted to give up, lost courage and found no reason to be alive.

I also met people in my life who played a vital role to make me what I am today, every day I feel so thankful for my life, I am living a very satisfied life, full of happiness because of all of them.

Every person who I met played a role I went to new horizons and met some new people they supported me and then new but there was someone who never left me alone, was always there to bring a new success for me, brought so many tears in my eyes but then when ever went on break made my life like a heaven on earth, I hate him, infect everyone on this earth hate him, but now I start missing him when he is not around for some time because if he is not there that mean a new success is not going to happen soon.

Therefor I am so much thankful to my challenge whenever he comes to my life I achieve something big.

I was three when my uncle beat and insulted mymother for giving birth to a fourth daughter and tried to kill me as I am a girl, I was a little girl but it made me cry so much I saw a lot of blood coming out of my mother’s head, we had to leave our house that same night.

But because of that difficult time we left the city of my grandparents therefor we were saved fromchild marriage, honor killing and we got a chance to get education, my father is an only man among his brothers who loves daughters and gives them their rights, if we would have been with them I would not be the same person as I am today, Thanks to that difficult time of my life.

I was a little girlwhen my father got injured in an accident, all was changed in our lives, there was no food, no new cloths, noprotection and respect in the society as we became so poor, my mother’s brothers forced us to leave their house, we had to live in theChurch for two years. My mother would do dish washing in houses of rich people, would buy medicine for my father and would feed us.

Without Knowledge of my parents I learnt work of embroidery and started doing work as a child laborer to help my mother then my other sisters also joined me, My mother and all of us worked so hard and bought some land in another village,

Thanks to that difficult time because of it we had our own house, here no one can ask us to leave from here because this house is our own.

I was 13 when my teacherinsulted me and beat me and for the first time I realized the importance to stop violence against children and to give them education with love, care and respect.

That day I changed my identity, my thoughts, my goals and started teaching little girls in the courtyard of my house, I started looking at every girl as my younger sister and made them feel that they can trust me because I love them and I started educating girls, who made me their Sister Zeph

Thanks to that difficult time due to which I came to know the reason of my life on this earth.

In 2006 I was celebrating Christmas with my family in our house when gunmen came and starting firing in our house, they were shouting and threating, inside the house I was thinking of my students and was great full that those gunmen did not come in presence of students, thanks to my brother-in-law because of whose wisdom and courage we were able to escape from this situation.

At that time I realized that I have to do a better job from where I willget better salary so that I would have enough money to take a school on rent and my students would not have to sit in open class room which could be dangerous for their safety

Thanks to that difficult time after that I never stopped getting education for myself and found a job as a guested officer in a biggest telecom Company of Pakistan although it took me years but I did it.

It was very difficult for me to manage the time because after doing 8 hours work six days a week it would take me one hour to reach to my evening school, my school is my life and without salary it was not possibleto run the school therefor it was essential to do a job and to teach both at a time as there was nofinancial support until then for the school but only my salary.

During those days a new supervisor joined the office and he started harassing me sexually, I could not leave my job, I had no other source of income, it was a big challenge to go to office and to spend 8 hours there every day, one day he emailed me photos of necked women this was a time when I decided to take an action, I forwarded that email to the General Manager of the company and demanded to give him punishment, after knowing this action he gave me threats, I again wrote to HR and I was transferred to the office which was very close to my house, a jury was made to investigate the case this time all-female colleagues stood with me who never spoke against him before and he was fired from his job.

Thanks to that difficult time due to which I was able to get justice for those female colleagues who were facing sexual harassment but could not speak for years and I was posted near to my home where I had enough time to teach my students.

In2013 one morning I was going to my office when two men, on motorbike, wearing black helmets stopped me on my way to office, they slapped on my face so hard and said stop doing what you are doing or you will have to face us, I heard that, went to my office, cried in bath room for a while because of insult, came to my seat and started doing my work.

This incident made me realize that my work was making a big impact that even those who are living in a deep darkness, they had to come out to stop me.

After one week that incident some men came to my house, use very abusive language, made my mother and sister injured and went away, when I was coming home from office, they beat me so much, left me fainted on street ( they are from my own village and I know them), I went to police and when police came men ran from their houses by leaving their women alone, police men made their women hostage and announced that they will not leave women until men come and surrender, I went to the police officer in that house and requested him to release the women , he did not do it then I called to the Superintended of Police and said ‘’ stop using women to prove yourself strong and release them right now’’

In that year I joined World Pulse, wrote my story, won World Pulse Lynn Sym Global prize, got international attention and not only received a big prize money but so many friends donate us too.

We bought some land, made a beautiful, small but a safe building, installed security cameras, hired security guards, Channel news Asia made a documentary on my life ‘’ flight of the falcons’’ this film won a Gold medal from New York film festivals, through world Pulse my story was published on big media outlets I got an opportunity to visit Europe and South Korea to take leadership trainings and I was given a great opportunity to speak at Emerging women lives Conference and this was a beginning of my journey to make a bigger impact, to change more lives, to be heard and to become a global leader from a grassroots leader

challenges and difficulties do not come in my life to break me but to make me realize and to proofthat nothing is stronger than a determined woman

This post was submitted in response to I Am Thankful for You Because....

Comments 8

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  • jlanghus
    Oct 25, 2017
    Oct 25, 2017

    Hi lovely Sister Zeph, aka Wonder Woman:-) I love your story, and I'm glad to have learned even more about it here. You have such an inspiring, positive and indomitable spirit. Keep shining, teaching, inspiring, and leading the way...

  • Sister Zeph
    Oct 29, 2017
    Oct 29, 2017

    Thank you very much dear sister, God bless you too 

  • jlanghus
    Oct 30, 2017
    Oct 30, 2017

    You're welcome:-) Have a great day!!!

  • mae me
    Oct 26, 2017
    Oct 26, 2017

    Sister Zeph, hi :) I like your last statement and I quote "challenges and difficulties do not come in my life to break me but to make me realize and to proof that nothing is stronger than a determined woman"   Thumbs up to this, and let us continue to be strong despite challenges! 

  • Sister Zeph
    Oct 29, 2017
    Oct 29, 2017

    Thank you dear maeann  I believe if we do not have challenges in life , life is just lifeless 

  • Wendy Stebbins
    Jan 19
    Jan 19

    Congratulations on the award you won in 2014. You are such an inspiring example of the saying "The opportunity is in the problem, the gift is in the problem." I am sorry for what you have been through, but the help you bring to others BECAUSE of that is amazing. Who could have known that your challenges would be your destiny to help others.  Keep up the good work.


    Wendy Stebbins 

  • Lily Habesha
    Feb 06
    Feb 06

    Dear Sister Zeph,

    Thank you for sharing this increafible story.

    Thank you for the wonderful job.


  • sridevi k
    Mar 04
    Mar 04

    Dear Zeph,My Inspiration, The warrior woman, U r courage and bravery personified. Kudos to your guts and survival instinct in U, Fought all the odds to come up in life, U have been brave and very gutsy which inspire all women in the world to become very Strong. Congratulations on Winning the Award, which is very well deserved. Keep inspiring us with ur brave stories. May God Bless u with all the happiness and courage and victory in all your deeds and work.

    Best Regards and Sincerely

    With Love from Sridevii