“An attempt to seek signs of normalcy in an abnormal world “
This is the story about ordinary women living their lives extraordinary..so brace yourself and widen your eyes to hear about the journey of women living in delhi’s red light area ! Yes, you heard it right ..these women raise their children, cook for their lovers,visit temples, shrines and mosques, complain about pimps and brothel owners , listen to film songs and solicit and entertain customers. This is a portrait of woman for whom this is the work – a way to make living. sometimes they are helpless and don’t have choices.
As I walked through those narrow roads, backpack in one hand and millions of thoughts ready to burst , whose telephones wires entangled liked branches of trees, woman solicit customers by waving their arms from their balcony window, bright sun shining on my head. Walking in those dark, scary stairs which lead me to the place where rainbow stays and when you look at sunset, clouds turning purple-ish pink and sky turning every shade of blue in seconds with azaan playing background in the serene sky , i knew this road has magic ^^. I work for this beautiful initiative to liberate , create safe space for children and women on road with various volunteers. Those rooms are dark,dingy, stark and forbidden. its like a zoo . traffic is always sluggish . Suman , age 56 always keen to study despite how many difficulties she may face to learn , concentrate and remember taught me there no age in learning . renu, age 19 always ready help and interact with me from sharing secrets to each other to learning maths was fun . she taught me its okay to be sad or broken but its important to share . pooja, age 32 learnt painting with me like she’s painting the sky with her bare hands taught me how we all can be brave and strong . Uma , age 35 learnt how to write her name finally after 35 years taught the importance of identity that i felt in her eyes . how easily we losses it to become someone else.Harsh, age 13 taught me how crucial is too see dreams .Priya ,age 40s. cooks delicious food and today she is an entrepreneur and has her own kitchen . you know, why i am telling you all this? All these woman for many many years since they are born has heard that she is nobody ! she deserves to be a sex worker ! she is born for this work only ! she is not worthy for any other work! crushing their soul that she fears to come in light . the women in our lineage played many roles grew under the shades of men but they breathed in their own skin. they are told to be forbidden ! they are termed as impure ! it took million moments of hard work, patience, and facing our own vulnerabilities, giving confidence to woman who can proud look at themselves in the mirror and embrace themselves. This is the road where see rainbow on rainy days . This is road where woman protects woman. This is road where work is work to filing the empty stomach , This is road where you are touched by selfless love .This is the road where many people are richer than us because of their golden heart. This is the road where a woman gives her roti to you , even though she has empty stomach . This is the road where she smiles leaving all her problems behind. This is road where sun shines so bright everyday but its sunlight doesn’t reaches to those shut doors. This is road where temples and maazjid exist together on the same road. Isn’t it irony ? a place called forbidden . impure has both ! that’s magic it beholds . yes, yes … muslim women do pray to hindu gods and hindu women do read namaz. Many women follow both faiths. it is about their souls.
These women .They are so open yet so closed.Their bodies are commodities, available to anybody who can pay. there life stories specially on how they ended up here , are identical yet, there is something in each woman that makes her distinct . There is no person like suman , uma, pooja, harsh, renu in the world and we can’t grasp the essence of their personalities and lives. . So, when life throws stones at you , don’t hide .Catch them and make a bridge to come out of those times .. if live would not be hard , how will we know how strong are we . It’s important to start , to come out of your comfort zones and do something that even you wouldn’t have imagined like those women did . we just need to face and accept our flaws and vulnerabilities because if we can’t save ourselves from drowning and how can we help others from drowning in eternal dark void . kindness is the only key to every lock that we are searching for and remember ” To be kind to unkind, they need it the most”. That dark road which is forbidden to enter is like our heart filled with fears and insecurities, you just need switch on the lights .One day that road will find its normalcy and so, will YOU . it is time we break this societal defination of being a woman, it is the time we grew bigger than this . and BE THE CHANGE..
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