Women’s Day Note | Stuti Ashok Gupta

Overtime I have realised that something that I truly feel that I deserve to have or to experience – I develop this unexplainable amount of courage, this weird audacious spine for what I want to do even if it is something that was unthinkable at one point of time when I was growing up. And times when I let that guilt of how “my parents have raised me well so I must not speak against them” “they let me do everything compared to other girls or boys, so if they don’t want me to do this one thing, I’m okay with that” and “maybe it is too much for the society to understand” – that guilt eats me up, and I lose my conviction. It’s been a constant battle, believe me. And I’m still a part of that internal conflict of “I want to be free” and “am I asking for too much?” So before I say “happy women’s day” – I want to tell you, and myself too – woman, you deserve to be free; you want to marry, so you do that, and if you don’t want to marry, then don’t let anyone guilt you into it. You want to travel, please stand up for yourself and book that damn ticket. You want to start a business, take smaller steps towards it without letting anyone tell you that “women can’t run a business” – I started a business at 22, in Manali and that still leaves me feeling surprised – how did I do that? Sometimes I ask myself. The only answer I get to that is “because you believed you deserved a chance to do it” and so you did, despite all the odds that were against you, and all that baggage that comes from being a small town girl. It is not easy, absolutely not – but if you start to believe that you deserve the life you dream of – and all the freedom you think you want will rush in, and I am not saying that the guilt ever ends – you will always feel guilty of prioritising yourself – because we have been trained and conditioned over generations to feel that we need to keep their choices second, and others first. YOU DESERVE EVERYTHING. . . 📸 @kyabc #women #womensupportingwomen #womenempoweringwomen #womensday2020

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