I was raised by a single banker mother, who left her husband because she was tired of broken ribs and bones.
Yes, my mother lived a hell in her 3 years of marriage. And, I am the only reminder of her unpleasant painful past.
Knowing the pain of being raised by a single mom, who belonged to a middle class, I refuted the media claims that Sara Ali Khan portrayed the struggles and challenges of kids being raised by single mothers until I saw one of her interviews.
What I find difficult to explain is how I went from detesting Sara for being an ideal case of nepotism in Bollywood, to finding myself and my struggles in her. Our stories are so different yet so similar.
Before you read any further, I want to make clear that I haven’t seen any of her movies. So, I don’t have any remarks about her acting skills. I am not her paid PR either.
I am writing this piece because I wanted the world to know that we are raised by a single mother but that doesn’t mean we are any less – we might be different but definitely not less.
#1 We Don’t Feel Entitled
Most of us don’t feel that we are entitled to any special treatment or privileges.
Since our early age, we have been taught that real heroes earn privileges or titles rather than inherit it.
Probably, it is imprinted on our minds when we see our single moms leaving no stone unturned in becoming a strong independent woman, who thrashes stereotypes in this male-dominated society.
And, possibly that’s the reason why Sara Ali Khan might you remind so much of Amrita Singh and less of the Royal Kharana that she was born in.
#2 Education & Being Independent Is Non-Negotiable
Being raised by an educated and independent mom, being educated was non-negotiable. My mom always felt that it wasn’t her family, friends or relatives who supported her during her tough times – but her education.
We are told that we can do anything in our lives or chase any dream but we can’t compromise on education, hard work and persistence.
And, I was surprised when Sara also spoke about the similar focus on education. Though she spoke about spending her dad’s money on education, which many of us don’t have access to.
#3 Lived through a home wrecked by a nasty break up
It isn’t easy to live through a home wrecked by a nasty break-up and being questioned about your parent’s tumultuous relationship at every family function.
And, my heart goes to Sara on this.
When your parents are public figures, when every news channel covered their broken marriage, it must have taken a lot of courage for Sara and her brother to not go under depression or fall prey to substance abuse.
It’s difficult to not react when the interviewer starts scratching those old wounds in a public talk show!
When you are asked about the nasty breakup, you can only smile and show the courage that the world expects you to show!
#4 Being Raised By Strong Determined Mothers
Kids, especially girls, raised by strong independent moms tend to be strong and upfront. As we hardly know how to sugarcoat the truth, many people detest us for being brave enough to call out the ugly truth.
And, Sara embraces that beautifully when she mentioned in one of her interviews:
“My mother is a huge part of who I am. I look up to her a lot. It is not necessarily about being a star kid but about being her daughter. She has always led her life in a very simple and real way.
“And she has tried to imbibe these qualities in both me and my brother. And it is not because she has been an actor but because even before she became an actor, she was this ‘bindaas’ and honest person. I have lived with her for 23 years, so I hope some of it has rubbed off me.”
Like her, many of us, also feel our moms are much more bindaas, honest and determined than we are!
#5 Understanding Sometimes People Are Not Meant To Be Together
At an age when kids believe in the phrase “They lived happily ever after”, we got to know that all love stories are not meant to be FOREVER.
And, that’s absolutely fine. It’s always better to have two happy people alone than two unhappy people together in marriage.
In one of her interviews, Sara said:
“They would have been very unhappy together had they stick together. They took the right decision and now, everyone’s happy. I’m happy, abba is happy, Mumma is happy.”
It is definitely easier said than done.
It takes hell lot of maturity to accept that your parents were not made for each other like the parents of your best friend or your neighbours.
Here is what I want to tell all the strong souls out there!
Dear All The (Struggling Yet Inspiring) Single Moms,
Thanks for being the strongest woman we know.
During dark times, when the world gave up on you thanks for not giving up on us.
There are moments in my life when we wish we had half the strength you have.
You are the most amazing person we know, and we feel so proud to learn about life from you.