Heroes are not those who fight against bad people on screen. Heroes are those who fight their circumstances and take a stand against toxic people in real life. And, today, we are celebrating one such real-life hero, who refused to bow down to the ugly circumstances and fought like a true warrior for the sake of her three daughters.
From being tortured for giving birth to three daughters, to moving out of toxic marriage, to being financially independent to setting a global art business, this woman is a real hero that needs to be applauded. While sharing her inspiring story with HoB, she mentioned:
“At 26, I got married to someone I barely knew. I left behind my parents, my home, my love for painting for him. Within a year of marriage, I gave birth to a baby girl. I was excited to be a new mom, but my husband didn’t share my joy, instead, he said, ‘I wanted a boy!’ and hurled abuses at me. My heart sank, I hadn’t seen this side of my husband… We tried 2 more times–both times we had a girl. After my 3rd delivery, even my in-laws started physically abusing me. I didn’t know what to do… I didn’t want to trouble my parents by going back home & I had 3 girls to fend for.
For everyone’s sake, I decided to keep mum; hoping that someday, the abuse would stop. But it didn’t.
He’d beat me regularly. But the worst part was that even though we lived in the same house, my girls were growing up without a dad. I realised I was educated and capable of supporting my girls and so I took up a job as a teacher. I also got back to painting–my one true love. Soon enough, painting became my therapy, my meditation. In the wee hours of the night, whilst everyone slept, I’d paint. Being alone with my emotions made me realise that me and my daughters deserved better. And so, after 10 years of torture, I decided to leave without any belongings–my eldest was 9 and my youngest 3.
I finally went back home and told Maa everything. Instead of saying, ‘Adjust karo.’ she said, ‘I’m sorry you went through this, but I’m proud of you for walking out.’ That’s all I needed to hear! She offered to support us, but I didn’t want to be a burden. So I got back to teaching.
I’d work at a school during the day, and give tuitions in the evening; I didn’t mind the hustle, I was happy my girls were going to good schools. And at night, I continued to paint; that’s the one thing I did for myself. Before long I created pieces for school, family and friends–I loved being referred to as an ‘artist.’ Over time, our situation got better and my daughters found their own paths. My career as a teacher also ended and about 5 years ago, I retired.
Having all this free time felt weird, I think my daughters realised this and 4 years ago, they converted my art into products! They made trays, coasters, stationery and storage boxes; I was surprised! And so, when my daughters suggested we exhibit my art, I agreed!
We hosted many exhibitions across the country. We got an overwhelming response and that’s how Studio Decorai was born! And last year, to mark a global presence, we set up our Etsy shop. After that, orders and appreciation kept pouring in; one customer even waited two months for my art!
At 71, I finally found my calling! My husband was ashamed when we had three daughters, but my daughters have proved to be the wind beneath my wings and have shown that, ‘Betiyan duniya badal sakti hai!”
At IFORHER, we are in awe of this inspiring family and hope many more seek inspiration from them!