My Story: My Grandmother Was So Unhappy; She Didn't Come To See Me When I Was Born
“I was the 4th daughter to my parents. So, when I was born my grandmother was probably so upset that she didn’t come to see me in the hospital. Anyway…
My childhood wasn’t exactly a fairytale. In fact, it was exact opposite of that. My father had decided to quit his job and take up farming. So we shifted to Umargaon, the same place which later came to limelight because of Mahabharata. It was a ‘gaon’ literally. I used to go to school in Bordi where I would study with adivasi kids. But at the same time, I was learning a lot from my father, just observing him… his life.
He did a lot of social work in that village. It was because of his efforts the State Transport bus started coming to the village. There was no tar road, he laid the tar road. He opened a rationing shop there, established a primary school and got a Doctor to come to the village. He did a lot and never craved for limelight. He chose to remain unknown… but thats the reason why he was my hero.
After my 5th standard we had to come back to Mumbai for our schooling. Thats’ when my dad took up a job in retail shop and to meet with increased expenses of the city life also started taking tuitions. I knew he was doing all this so we could have a good future. But I could see him getting extremely tired by the end of the day.
My father always wanted me to take medicine and also join civil services. To fulfil his wishes, I joined T.N Medical college and did my graduation in Audiology and Speech Therapy. At the same time, I gave government labour office exam and came 1st in Maharashtra. Father was very happy. I got posted in Thane, but that was class 2 gazetted post and he wanted me to have class 1 post. So, I appeared again for the exam and got a class 1 post… Sales Tax Officer. All for my father. He was ecstatic to see his daughter fulfilling his dreams.
But soon I realised that this job is not what I truly wanted to do in life. At some level I was also fed up with the corruption around me, so… after 3 years I decided to call it quits. This is a trait I have got from my father, ‘only doing that what pleases you’. He had been my closest friend. Everything under the sun, I would always discuss with him. So when I told him my decision to quit, he said ‘just leave.’… Manoj, my husband also wholeheartedly supported me.
Dr. Bhumkar suggested me to do something in voice therapy. It’s a neglected part of speech therapy. There are very few voice clinic set ups in India. Maybe because it’s not that lucrative…and needs lot of hard work and patience. So when I decided to open a voice clinic, a lot of my friends thought I have lost it.
There are many people who struggle in life because of their voice. A man sounding like a woman and vice versa can affect one’s growth. They face challenges in career as well as rejections in match-making. It affects their confidence and the whole life can be ruined because of that. This problem can be treated, but how many of them are aware of it? My forte is voice for professional voice users…maintenance and enhancement of voice for actors, singers, teachers etc…Irony is 90% of them do not even know how the vocal cords look like. There are many such issues related to voice and I want to spread awareness and help as many as possible. I am conducting workshops, giving lectures just to reach out to people. Today, my clinic doesn’t just reflect my profession, it reflects my passion.
As I started working with teachers for their voice issues, I started looking for answers.. ‘how their voice can be saved?’, this took me into education field… and made me establish a company. We are a CSR consultancy also working as implementing agency for education related projects. Me and my business partners are now working on giving e-learning, virtual learning, specially for Government / Corporation schools.
In 2010, my guide… my mentor… my father passed away. But he was a satisfied man. I don’t think he missed having a son at all.”