“I was sorely body-shamed and language-shamed as a kid and then a teenager. It was tough to go on a secret eating disorder when you’re just 11 or 12-year old, and every kid around you is hogging over cupcakes or pizzas. I would go on crash diets and desperately tried to lose weight due to the environment around me. I wasn’t just carrying the weight of body-shaming on my shoulders as a teenager, but it was also about the English language which is more prioritize than our own language. I felt so much of embarrassment resulting to which I stopped speaking to people around me in the new school, not that they were Shakespeare, but they did know better than me. One day I didn’t go to school, and my classmate texted me “why didn’t you come to school today” and I looked at that message again and again thinking, damn!what does that even mean. People around me thought I am rude, dumb-head or simply a quiet person but in fact, I had a lot to say and things were different and hilarious on another side of the story. I went to my father and asked him that how did he learn the English language to which he replied “there’s no secret or impossibility to anything and I should start reading books, newspaper and see different culture and language movies, that would not just help you learn the language but also keep you aware of surrounding and different cultures”. I started following his words and worked on my speech and body. Things started going well.
One morning I requested my father to teach me how to ride bikes and bullets but told him that I would fall as motorcycle are so heavy for girls, to which he replied that “an aeroplane is also cumbersome, but it is controlled by a pilot be it any gender, you just need to have right control and balance over anything in life.” he always had a motivational answers to my doubts and questions. I waited for next morning with a great hope of learning something new but didn’t know that morning will take me to an entirely new chapter of life. My father met with a severe road accident while coming back home and got major brain injury with many fractured body parts. That day changed me completely as a person. For months and months we prayed for his life and would see him lying down in ICU, waiting for a miracle to happen with lots of tears in eyes. Whenever we went to see him, he would struggle to speak and tell us “I will fight this and come back home very soon,” he was my hero. He returned home but was as an entirely new and different person physically. Before the accident, he would always tell me that he will get me a camera if I get into NIFT college, with good rank as I was always an average student but always wanted to have a camera. I got all India rank 50 in NIFT, but he wasn’t conscious enough to celebrate that moment or news and by that time I had lost all my interest in anything. I became a real quiet person keeping any language away from me to avoid any conversation. I started my college and gained back weight.
Sometimes you would feel empty, all the right things happening around you starts to rob your peace for no reason. You need extra love and extra care; even the slightest sharp words makes you go back to bed and think of all the hapless things happened till now, even a simple wrong gesture by someone will remind you of an unfortunate incident. You feel restless and agonize for no reason, even though you detest this feeling, but you haven’t got control over it. You feel something wrong is going on but without any idea of it. Your achievements won’t make you happy, you become cherophobic (A person who is afraid of being happy, people doesn’t want to be happy because they feel like something bad or tragic will happen sooner after they become comfortable.)
And there’s an image of social shame in your mind stopping you from talking about this to anybody, people will surmise you’re either rude or dumb you sometimes blabber, stammer or struggling to say a hello. You have lots of love and lots of colors inside you, but this restlessness eats it all.
Everyone meets a point in life where they see some weak moments but accepting that, getting over it and moving forward is what makes you stronger.
Mental anxiety or illness is turning into major problems these days, help yourself because no medicine is greater than self-care and confidence, start doing something you love. Make people around you happy or at least be nice to those around you. You never know who has got what great potential, skill or how good human he/she is. You never know whose day went happily because of your kind words.
9-10months back I didn’t know I could click or style someone, I bought a camera just for the sake of attendance in college and always thought it to be a wrong investment as I wasn’t excited about anything anymore till I started getting into it, got lots of appreciation and feedbacks from each and every corner of my little growing world. I am thankful to myself and everyone around me for the belief and love. I feel much stronger, calm and happy person. Change only happens when you want it.
My father is recovering and under medication but as always never fails to motivate me. I am in last year of my college starting up with my writing blog and working well with so many different and good jewelry/fashion brands as a designer, stylist, and a photographer.
“I am sharing my story to tell everyone that it’s fine to be a little fat, that it’s fine not to master a language, it’s fine to be sad for a while because all these things are temporary and what matters is who you are and what makes you happy.””
Submitted By – Simran Juneja
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