Who said women don’t ride bikes? Or can’t drive? These sexist stigmas have been haunting the lives of women for centuries now. We’re talking about the power of a woman limited by the roles defined for her by society or her capabilities judged by those who will never be in her shoes. So, who determines the true potential of a woman? Who predicts her dreams and ambitions?
No one. No one but her.
We recently came across yet another uplifting story by Humans Of Bombay.
It tells the story of a woman who rode her bike straight through the barrier of stereotypes! Moving forth on a journey of self-realisation and worth, this gangster lady has inspired thousands of young women with her story.
Her message is simple. Be who you want to be and do what you want to do.
Here is her great adventure in her own words:
“When I was 6 years old, I got breathless and was admitted to the hospital. I had a growth in my windpipe called Papillomas and as a result I had to depend on an oxygen tank until I was 18. After multiple surgeries I was able to breathe normally, but my voice was barely audible — until today I have to get a laser surgery every year, or else I lose my voice.
I am a homemaker. I have two sons and a loving husband, but I’ve always felt like I need to do more and be more. Many years ago we had only one car and my husband would take that car to work. Whether it was dropping my children for school or tuitions or running my errands, I would always have to go in an auto…so I decided to start saving money for a bike. Every month I would save a little, and after a year and a half I was able to purchase my own bike— and the second I drove it, I fell in love. More than anything it gave me the independence to move around freely — it may not sound like a lot to you but it was everything to me.
I joined a female motorcycle group, and saw that there was a group of women going to Goa on their bikes…I wondered if it would be appropriate for a homemaker to leave her kids and family and go out on a bike journey. When I told my family about this opportunity they were so supportive — intact they pushed me to go for it! My husband said he will make sure he’s at home more and my older son said that he would take care of his younger brother. I made their study time tables for them, organised their drops to school and tuition and took it — I went to Goa and back by bike with a group of women and it was the most liberating feeling of my life…and it had only just begun.
Last year, I even completed a ride to Himachal and Uttarakhand but the highlight of my life has been when I got chosen to go to Khardung La by TVS Scooty Zest. At first when I applied, I thought that from 50,000 applicants there was a slim chance, but I almost immediately got a call saying I was on board!
The journey was a beautiful one — of course there was a lot of difficult terrain but it was all worth it when we got to the top on August 21st. In fact, I turned 50 on that very day and the rest of my group organised a cake and sang for me on top of the peak. I remember the moment I reached the top— I started screaming! Never before had I felt so free, powerful and complete. When I got to the top, I felt that I had my own identity… that I wasn’t just someone’s mother, or wife— I was ME. I am a 50 year old homemaker who has a passion for bikes… and I just got to the top of one of the highest peaks in the country. Age? No barrier. Profession? No Barrier? Disability? No Barrier. Truth is, the only barrier is you and if you really want something, no power in this world can stop you from getting it.”