"Badminton is my favorite game, I always wanted to pursue my career as a badminton player, but life had other plans for me," Sangeeta (name changed) said suddenly.
A very beautiful girl. She has dark black wavy hair and pink baby skin, her smile is a ray of sunshine on a winter's day and those eyes speak always without any word. Her voice is modulated that doesn’t know how to protest. Her beautiful smile has many untold stories- stories of her broken dreams, loneliness, and exploitation.
I met her a few months ago and realized that she was a bit different. Unlike other girls in their early twenties, Sangeeta is very casual towards her life. In general, girls of her age are very active and full of life, which was missing in her case. I told myself that she may be too mature for her age. Slowly, I came to know that she was completely bruised because her childhood was not as smooth as it's supposed to be.
"I am blessed with the best grandparents on earth," she said with sparkled eyes! Things changed completely once they passed away and all the members of the house started showing their real avatars.
"I was the apple of my grandparents' eyes, but as they passed away, life became tough. The scarcity of love and care feels like I am surrounded with dry cactus. All the close people – uncles and aunts — are all showing their true colours, baby cousins started showing their backs. As my father is very calm and not earning in millions, unlike other members, also impacted my mom’s life." She also started working. Most of her sisters adorned themselves in expensive gifts and all the luxurious things whereas she was struggling with basic needs of life.
"I was not allowed to do the things I like doing, was always restricted with a golden chain, which looks very cultured (in Indian context) on the outside but in reality, they are called 'hard constraint'. Gradually, I lost my social circle — no friends, no relatives, to share my dejected feelings.
As a result, I chose to read, that helped me sleep at night - now I don’t read much. I was very thin, however, my frustration forced me towards obesity. Writing helps me express better than talking. I was living in a shell, where my rotten soul and I resided together hand in hand.
My boyfriend is more of a friend than my boyfriend, we know each other since childhood. His parents know me as his girlfriend, so do my parents. Presently he is in a different country, we talk, chat, and fight sometimes, that’s all.
Badminton came into my life as raindrops in the scorching summer heat, I love getting drenched in the rain. Every raindrop helps me overcome the emptiness, and slowly, I started living my unattainable dream, started believing in myself, smiling like a baby without any reason and called myself "sad queen turns into the happiest queen".
It was my life, passion, and love too. I started dreaming with my open eyes to become the best badminton player. It rejuvenates me to chase my dreams. I never got tired of playing badminton, day and night, morning to dusk.
But I was always lucky in my bad luck." One fine day she realized her coach started touching her ‘differently’.
A girl has the power to judge between good touch and bad touch. She felt very bad, helpless and scared too. Initially she tried to ignore it, but later on, it turned into a nightmare. She wanted to cry loudly and tell the world about her stories. But alas!
She loved badminton, she didn’t want to lose it at any cost, but at the cost of what? So she finally said goodbye to her one and only beloved companion. When I informed my parents, they were shocked. Only my pillow knows how much I cried and shouted at God.
"Today I'm a different person, much better, a bit bold, gradually started taking my own decisions. Nothing bothers me anymore, kicking out all the negativity from my life. So far my journey has taught me how to cope up with failure."