“Growing up in Udupi, my house was filled with pre-independence stories. I got married soon after my graduation. As per the Bunt tradition, my father had given dowry but then I convinced my husband to return it. I used to be very timid and shy but the bank job changed my life. I became self reliant, confident and independent. After 25 years of service, I took voluntary retirement. I learnt driving at the age of 40 and overcame my stage fright at the age of 55. By the time I hit 60 I was an award winning writer and a marriage counselor.
In 2005, while returning from Kochi, a truck drove head on into our car. My son and grandson escaped but fate had different plans for my husband and me. We cracked a few bones, I wasn’t sure if we would survive this onslaught from God.
Meeting with an accident at an old age is the worst thing that can happen to anyone. At a time when you want to settle down with your partner and start that ‘fairytale’ life, your whole life halts. My husband went into a coma for 6 days after the accident. He is to this day traumatized by the accident and suffers from Dementia. Both my husband and I were immobilized for over six months and we went into depression. My son kept blaming himself for the accident.
One day my son got paints and asked me to paint. But I shouted at him because I couldn’t move my fingers. But I knew I did not want to give up. I decided to overcome the pain and learn painting. At the age of 60, with a bedridden husband on one side and an urge to paint on another, my life took a turn. In 2 years, I had my first solo exhibition, participated in 5 group shows and went on to publish my autobiography.
I began a new phase of my life at the age of 60….and I’ve realized it’s never late to start anything new.”
– Usha Rai
Story By – BeingYou | PC: Senthil Kumar
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