“It is untrue that we women are weaker, we all are very special and have our set of strengths and weaknesses. We need to start talking about weaknesses before the pressure of being strong and perfect wreaks our possibilities and happiness.”
I have always been a strong, independent girl. Since childhood I was really good at sports and academics. A trunk full of medals and certificate was usual sight for me. But no one really paid much attention to it in the society I lived in, not even my parents. So it didn’t matter to me as well. I boxed and played basketball at the district level. I didn’t have to worry about my yearly test results for I was hard working and got ranked first or second in school.
My parents were never around when I was being applauded and appreciated by my peers. I never blamed them since they came from humble backgrounds and probably didn’t realize that these awards and ceremonies mattered. I had decided to be a nurse unaware of the fact that my parents had their own ideas about what it meant to be a nurse. Apparently nurses ended up becoming maniacs.
Mom said, “Uncle will take you to get your admission done” when I was helping her in the kitchen, chopping vegetables. I told her exam date for entrance was not near and it would happen only after a few weeks. “I am talking about management, not nursing” she explained. I told her that why I wanted to be a nurse. We ended up arguing and I lost my temper. People have wounds and scars from physical accidents but mine was different. I took the same knife I was chopping the vegetables with and carved lines on my wrist. But things ended up being the way they wanted and I had to study management, which I had never imagined myself doing.
I am 28 years old now. I worked in a bank which was a strange experience. Mostly because banking is not nursing. I always felt that void in my life, unhappy and unsatisfied that comes from not being able to progress towards a dream.I stayed at home, hardly got out, watching TV and doing nothing. Recently I started Zumba, it kept me fit and I’ve finally made new friends. During the recent earthquake I finally got myself out of house, together with my Zumba friends and started relief work. My contribution might not be big but I was moving ahead each time with the hope that it might make a little difference. I started working on building a school.
One day we were walking up a hill when a villager approached us and requested to help with a delivery case. The first thing I saw was a mother laying on the bed. The room was full of screams, pain, sweat and blood. Suddenly I found myself helping to deliver a child. I had never seen or experienced anything like it before, just the memories gives me the chills. The sight of the baby’s head made me nervous and anxious. I heard people shouting at me “Jarina, get that baby, hold him in your arms.” I could not believe what I was being a part of.
I was the first one to hold this new life and I could feel power, love, hope and magic.
“Slap the baby, he is not making any movements”,
How could I slap such a harmless thing? But the baby really was not moving. I tried hopelessly, hurting the baby and finally managed. He started crying and I cried along with him. I had delivered a baby, become the nurse that I always wanted to be. I will never forget that moment in my entire life.
It is untrue that we as women are weaker, we are all very special and have our set of strengths and weaknesses. We need to start talking about weaknesses before the pressure of being strong and perfect wreaks our happiness. Women do not need to be told what to do and how to live their lives, it is time we realize our strengths and accept the way we are.
It is never too late to start. I have become independent.
This experience taught me that it is not the weaknesses in people that stops us from being happy and progressive but the social system that constantly restricts us from exploring new avenues and forces us to live the life of someone we are not even connected with.