“Be The Heroine Of Your Life, Not The Victim”
Nothing comes without a price. When we desperately want something, we have to give up something in order to achieve it. Even for the things that are good for us, there is something that we need to let go of. That’s just how life is- a bargain- a series of choosing the things you may not necessarily like.
So, when I was at the most important crossroads of my life, after my husband and I started living separately. I was faced with two choices- move back home with my family or live alone and try to make it on my own. I choose the latter. I had always idealized the independent woman and this was my chance to become that. Except, I had no idea how to do it.
Specifically, I had no idea what I’ll end up having to give up for the independent life.
Some things are small, others aren’t. But, all of them add up to the price you pay for being an independent woman. Below is a non- exhaustive list of all the small and the big things that I have had to give up….
- Having My Morning Cup Of Coffee Served In Bed:To be honest, I underestimated the value of this until I ended up having to do it all on my own, every single day.
- Not Having To Decide The Menu Everyday: It is one of the toughest questions I have had to continue and have to answer every day… “Khane mein kya banana hai?”
- What Can Make A House Cleaning More Fun? A Women: Cleaning the dishes after a party, cleaning the washrooms on weekends, the Diwali cleaning and many more. It all gives me a shiver down my spine.
- Unbiased, Unquestioned Access To Rental Properties: Nobody asks a family or a married couple intrusive questions about their age or personal life. But, as a single woman, questions like marriageable age hai, boyfriend hai? Ghar kitne baje aati ho? are inevitable. Rules like “no boyfriends”, and no “late nights” are also applicable, regardless of your age or profession.
- Not Having To Worry About My Safety: When you live with family, home is a safe place. There are parents, siblings or a husband to keep you safe. Delivery boys are not a threat and you can let them into your kitchen to empty the carton of your weekly grocery. As a single woman, that is not an option. Even when you are not at home you have to be cautious.
- Not Having To Worry About Money: As someone who made the conscious decision to be financially independent, asking papa for money when you are running low is simply not an option. So, you have to learn to budget and live with less than respectable amount of money in your bank account every now and then.
- Not Worrying About Being Judged: You may be living with your parents and sneaking out every night to have sex with your boyfriend or going on a new Tinder date every week and nobody will question your character. Why? Because you live with your parents. You may be married, but have a lover or few on the side nobody will say a word. Why? Because you are married. But if you are living on your own, people automatically assume that you are sleeping around and that is the reason you live alone, when you may actually not even have any other time or desire or opportunity for it. Living with family acts as a cloak against society’s judgments. But, when you live alone, you suddenly become very aware of how people see you.
- People: I sometimes avoid conversation with relatives, friends or neighbors because I don’t want the fact that I live by myself to be a topic of conversation. I don’t want to have to explain why or be given advice or even get into a political discussion about women’s safety. No, thank you!!
“I Prefer To Earn It. It Makes Me Appreciate It More.”