“Our real strength lies not in independence, but in interdependence. No individual person has all the strengths, all the resources and all the stamina required for the complete blossoming of their vision.
That thought isn’t written by me but when I read those lines first, I started realising just how much those words define my feelings. As a person who had been struggling her whole life to be independent, I never quite realized just how much pressure I was putting on myself. As a child I knew I was different than others. The things which other children could do easily, I would try hard but still couldn’t do them. I thought maybe there was something wrong with me. And as I grew older, I started realising that indeed there was something wrong. I have seen how people will watch me with little more curiosity when I walked passed them, how they would whisper among themselves about how unlucky I was to have such a hard life. And I would question myself, why do they think it’s hard? The more I thought the more I came to understand that the answer lies in their mindset. Whenever someone sees me for the first time, what they will notice first is my physique. They will not notice the radiant smile but will notice how I look different than others. How there is something wrong with the way I walk. Well, that’s understandable because there aren’t much people like me.
I remember how ever since I was child, every single person who knew me was concerned about how will I survive in my life. As they say, world is not safe anymore. And I can’t live like this. My disability makes it difficult for me to do things on my own. It restricts me in more ways than I can imagine. But that’s not my fault, right? Still, I tried my best. Or rather I’m trying still. To be independent. I completed my engineering though many were sure I wouldn’t be able to take up science. I got my job and am working hard to prove myself. I am doing everything I can to be the better daughter, to be better sister. But whenever I come across someone telling me I need to be independent in order to survive, I feel like I have lost the battle. Because I know, it’s hard. I know I have to be independent for my sake, I know I can’t go on depending on someone else to help me with my life. But I also know that there are some physical limitations which I can’t cross no matter how hard I try. And I hate that fact.
I hate society for making me believe that if I can’t become independent then there is no use of how much I achieve in my life. Because no one will stop gossiping about my life till I become independent in their eyes.
But seriously, who are those people to decide whether I can live my life the way I want or not? Who are those to decide my abilities? And I guess it’s not just my problem, there are many people who are lacking there confidence, who are living in immense pressure just to fit into society’s criteria. Why though? Shouldn’t we celebrate our uniqueness? Why this obsession with being just like all the others? After so many years of trying hard to get accepted by society, I have come to realize that I don’t really want to impress anyone anymore… I know I should try to do things on my own, but not because someone tells me to but because I want to improve myself. That also means I accept that I am bound to fail but that won’t make me disheartened, that just means I will be lacking in something, which is just alright.
The purpose behind this whole rant is that I want people to understand that it’s ok if they are unable to do something, It’s ok to fail sometimes, you are not loser because you can’t do something, you are loser if you don’t try. That’s all. Let society define whatever criterias they want. You don’t have to fit because fitting somewhere doesn’t matter that much, because sometimes you are not a lost piece to fit in picture which is already drawn, but maybe you are whole new piece which may start new picture no one has ever seen.”
Submitted By – Rachana Sapre