A clang which was heard right up to my room followed by a crashing sound, sent my nerves wracking and my temper hit the red button. Walking down to the origin of the sound, I imaginatively smashed everything which came in my way, in reality, I only pursed my lips and told myself: All is well! Which was not of course because my unskilled but English-speaking maid who thinks she can run the country – which maybe is not far-fetched anyways because most of our politicians are unlettered and even goons – had piled over fifty utensils onto my tiny sink and was trying to pull out a reluctant bowl and glass from under the pile. They had refused saying that the pressure cooker and huge plate on top should be bathed first and being lower down the rung of the pile they would want some more solitude and time before they should be subjected to the gruesome routine of a scrub and a tumble. The prospective Madam Prime Minister had refused to listen to their tantrums and had yanked them from their safe abode. In the tussle between the clangy good-for-nothings and the wannabe country-runner, the latter had won but not before the former put up a huge fight and dropped off the sink onto the floor with that crashing sound. “Serves you right, Madam Nobody”, they screeched as they saw me appear and they were swinging & nose-diving into the hot cases on the floor.
Tired and frayed nerves, irritability touching the sky and zero solution for pathetic work attitudes I took a deep breath and asked our prospective PM to only break and ruin that stuff which she can replace for me. I was literally saved by the bell nee ring as my cousin found the precision moment to call me and wrenched me away from an unpleasant encounter. A few minutes into the conversation, I realized how each of us seemed to be in the same boat. Something which was like a thorn in the flesh. And being civilized, all you could do many a times is punch the wall in the bathroom or curse under your breadth.
We exchanged notes and shared some irritating anecdotes of our filial residents and decided that letting off through work, friends and conversations were always the best methods of release of angst. I added writing to the list!
My signature cup of tea and a skype call with dad brought me to some normal. While writing this I was beginning to think what it is that I was going to write about today? I had not even titled my word document but had just started writing. It is always good to have a ‘let-out’ hobby as I call my writing, to be, through my Blog. When no one wants to listen to me or I have no one to talk to or when I know none will understand what I want to say and why I am feeling thus or want to say this or that, then a blank computer screen, a keyboard and a cacophony of thoughts along with a decent grasp of some language (you need to write and express yourself in some language, don’t you?) is all I need to ‘let-out’ my heart. ‘Cause when I start writing everything seems hilarious and not so bad after all. Also, with so many thoughts passing through one’s head all at once, I doubt anything nonsensical will find room inside.
I started with talking of myself and shall continue to talk of my gender and beyond. I am not given in too much to symbolism, but it does make sense to awaken some conscience in our fellow human beings about certain important things via a cause, a moment, an event, a day. Not that anyone would remember it beyond that day, yet it may help.
No campaign or symbolism can work if the awakening about it is missing. And it cannot be left to a few individuals to take that responsibility. It is the collective responsibility of society to be aware and avoid making mistakes. Acceptable behavior remains a norm and any deviation is considered wrong. Justifiably so.
No amounts of quotes will lead to change till the customs and conventions disadvantageous to the girl child are discarded.
No amount of work will succeed till the habits and practices prejudicial to the girl child are abandoned for good.
No number of strict laws can accomplish the intended goal till prejudicial and negative impacted upbringings adverse to the girl child are discontinued.
No amount of sermonizing nor moral lecturing will realize the goal of equality for the gender till the torchbearer of a family: The Mother herself stands up to negate the injustice.
No amount of criticizing or berating of a particular ritual or practice or formality ever going to change anything till you yourself become the change you seek.
I have been fortunate enough to have come from a privileged section of society where respect for either gender was an unwritten rule. Where opportunities were equal. Where possibilities were endless. Where abilities respected constantly. Where evenhandedness was about justice for all. Where promises made were kept. Where choices were infinite. Where freedom to exercise those choices was honored.
I thus value and cherish each breath that I take and have dedicated a large part of my life enriching and supporting my kind and strengthening their effort to find a voice, some support, a will to fight, freedom to voice concerns, toil for a better life and collaborating and mentoring so that each can scaffold and reinforce what they have to their advantage.