I see you, with a smile on your face, a pretentious one. I can tell for I know how tough this was. Being a nerdy girl comes with its cons. Don’t people love to make fun of those who take their studies seriously? Being among the top 3 in class every time is not without its share of envy and mockery which some people love to indulge in. But tell you what, these very things is what hold you in good stead as you move forward in life.
Do you know you will get a Gold medal in your 3rd year Bcom and will be on the merit list of the University. That’s a mighty achievement, isn’t it? That’s not all- the best part is you will become a Chartered Accountant and bag An All Indian CA Rank- the merit list yet again!
While you achieve all these fabulous things in your academics, the numbers of naysayers will grow- people will try to make it an uncool thing. But it isn’t. Trust me! Dedication perseverance, coupled with intelligence is the right mantra for success which you will discover as you move forward in life. You stand tall and proud today, more than a decade letter, as a qualified CA working with a top notch investment bank in a very lucrative and niche area in finance. You are well regarded at the workplace. You also lead the Diversity and Inclusion workstream and one of your bigger goals is to see more women in the work place and take them along as you grow. A bold and unapologetic feminist you are! Had you dreamt you could be so vocal about things earlier?
The place you now stand in as a vulnerable teenager who is a part of a larger crowd but doesn’t feel comfortable being there, she rather prefers to be in the comfort of her home reading a book or chatting with Mom. But she dare not walk out- for she doesn’t want to invite the wrath of people. What they think of her matters, she doesn’t want to be termed a sore thumb. The multiple get togethers you showed up at and stayed back just because of this reason- you will be surprised to learn later in your life that nothing matters other than “you”. Life is short, why waste it on boring parties when you prefer to shake a leg in the comfort of your bedroom. You are a person who has a few friends and they are the ones you feel most at home with. Some of them who once seemed friends for life have moved away and you only remain friends on Facebook with that occasional Facebook birthday wish. As painful as it may seem, that’s life my love. But all is not lost. Some of them still remain an integral part of your life and cherish them , value them and put in your best to keep the bond intact for these are the ones that matter.
Now comes the best part- would you ever have imagined that you become a writer? Not in your wildest dreams I know. So one fine day after being a reader for ages you decided to pen your daughter’s birth story just like that. And the super confident person that you are, you went ahead and posted it on a popular parenting website Momspresso. That was the beginning of a new journey. How would it feel if I told you, you are one of the Top Bloggers there with a follower count of 240 and have bagged the coveted “Top Parenting Blogs for the Month” 4 times. Writing changed your life in numerous ways- it gave you greater confidence, opened up your mind to being more inclusive, sensitive and a feminist. That was the turning point. You realized that you weren’t always treated fairly, sometimes it was a sub conscious thing and heck not just others, even you dint treat yourself fairly at times. Perhaps this thing was fit into your mind – that being a woman you have fewer privileges than a man. Writing changed you and this was a big change. You were listed as as one of the Top 10 Indian Women Bloggers by a popular digital media platform “Women’s Web” – your writing which many say is bold and impactful and doesn’t shy away from talking about real issues is what influenced your personal and professional journey as well.
You realize a bit late in life that you own your career- you will be so proud of some unconventional decision you have taken like the 3 month business trip to Switzerland in 2017 without your heartbeat- your child Angel. A very difficult decision as a mother but with your beloved Mom’s support , you could do it. Women often complain that their career path is not as clear and they are given fewer opportunities than men. But when a golden opportunity comes their way, what do they do? You seized it and one day Angel will be super proud of you just as you feel good about yourself today.
You know as clueless as you are as a 15 year old today about what life will turn out to be, the truth is its fabulous and the best part is you have found your true passion- your job which gives you contentment and you relentlessly pursue your journey to the C- suite. And your writing which is an inseparable part of you- that safe haven where you share real stories of sexism you see at the workplace, stories of people who inspire you, your trials and tribulations as a parent and so much more.
Being financially independent – having the power to buy what you want right from a house to a designer bag and not having to ask, consult or hesitate- that my girl is being in control of yourself. That’s something every individual should be able to enjoy and the position you are in right now , believe me it only gets better from here. With power comes responsibility as they say- responsibility to raise your little girl right, be the role model for little girls and women around, through your writing and your role at the workplace influence them positively and take more women with you in your journey as you walk a step closer to that corner office.
Its a long and arduous journey and you meet many people on the way- some toxic but you now know who matters and who doesn’t. You are comfortable in your skin- you flaunt that black dress with aplomb. As a child you were told don’t wear black as you are dark skinned , you spent far too many years feeling inferior about your skin color and glasses but that changed suddenly. You are in love with yourself, you refuse to be body shamed for not having an hour glass figure, you refuse to cover that tiny bump which shows after childbirth.. You dress up well and put in efforts to look good- and that’s just for one person who matters the most-YOU’.
You are truly a changed person- and I wish you could see your life as it is today. It will take away the ill feeling and unhappiness you have had to endure but as they say- its only life experiences which teach us the best lessons- they make stronger, tougher, at the same time more compassionate. So going through the tough times helps, you emerge more resilient as you rise like a phoenix from the ashes.
I will not send this letter to you but burn it up and let you soak in what life has to offer- the good and bad and I will see you at the other side of the bend- the new you.
Your 33 year old self
This post is a part of #WomensDayBlogParty. I’d like to thank Uttara for introducing me. Read her post for this blog party here
Also do go to Dilpreet’s blog post on to read her wonderful thoughts on one of the super cool topics that are a part of this blog party.