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The job hunt was a gauntlet of soul-crushing rejections. Each "No" landed like a punch, but Kashish stood her ground, unyielding.
Kashish peered at her computer screen, puzzled by the jargon and unfamiliar programming languages that filled her LinkedIn feed. She was an online Computer Applications graduate from a small town in India, but her last job in IT was years ago.
Marrying Amit, a software developer, and moving to the USA without finding her own ground in India, was the biggest setback and mistake for Kashish. In the USA Kashish found herself trailing behind an industry that had sprinted forward without her.
Visa issues had initially held her back, and as time passed, her qualifications grew stale. Confined by visa restrictions, Kashish watched as days turned into years, each one distancing her further from her once-cherished IT career. Her resume collected digital dust on her laptop while Amit, her husband, was swallowed into the whirlwind of America’s tech culture. She found herself folding laundry and planning meals, stuck in a domestic life that seemed to choose her, rather than the other way around. Kashish became an official homemaker—a role she didn’t mind but never chose. Amit’s increasing condescension about her “outdated skills” and her “broken English” made her feel inadequate.
“Pehle angreji bolna seekhen.” Amit constantly criticized Kashish for her English, despite her years in the U.S.
He didn’t stop just at that but continued to find as many flaws as he could. Kashish kept falling in the deep pit of depression. Maybe Amit wanted the best for Kashish and really wanted her to succeed in life but his tone and facial expression always contradicted that.
“You should have the feel for numbers by this age. Your math is weak; how will you ever ace an interview?’ he’d say.
His words deepened Kashish’s depression, further eroding her self-confidence.
“I wish you’d catch up, Kashish. Everyone here is so ahead,” he’d often say, not-so-subtly implying that she was behind.
One fine day, while Amit was busy fighting IT dragons and untangling the web of codes, Kashish stumbled upon an ad for a yoga instructor certification course. Her mouse cursor flirted shamelessly with the “Apply Now” button. For Kashish, yoga wasn’t just stretching and awkward poses; it was her private therapy session with her soul. With a click that felt as decisive as cutting a wedding cake, she sealed the deal.
“Are you sure you want to do this? Yoga is a world apart from IT, you know,” Amit remarked with a chuckle when she told him. “You’ll have to communicate one-on-one as a yoga instructor and your English is so poor. And let’s not forget, your English has its own original flavor. How will you teach ‘Downward Dog’ when it sounds like ‘Down-Where Dog’? How will Americans ever understand you?” And he let out a big snickering laughter
Kashish looked him in the eyes, a fire ignited within her, “Exactly,” she said, brimming with a resolve so strong it could straighten a pretzel. “If people can understand Yoda, they’ll get me just fine.”
She devoted herself to the course, practicing asanas and studying yogic philosophy. When she finally received her certification, Kashish felt a sense of achievement she hadn’t felt in years.
The job hunt was a gauntlet of soul-crushing rejections. Each “No” landed like a punch, but Kashish stood her ground, unyielding. When she finally got that call from a high-profile fitness center, it felt like a ray of light piercing through dark clouds. The voice on the other end, a woman from HR, bubbled with enthusiasm: “Let’s do a mini session, shall we? Bring your yoga mat and some hydration!”
Adrenaline and anticipation filled Kashish as she meticulously crafted a variety of mini yoga routines for the interview. She was determined not to let even a hint of uncertainty cloud her performance. And when the day came, she flowed through her yoga poses with an almost ethereal grace, leaving the interviewer spellbound.
Yet, amid this outward display of confidence, Kashish was fighting an inner battle. Echoes of Amit’s demeaning expectations filled her mind, reverberating like taunts in an empty hall. Each disparaging comment he’d ever made loomed large, threatening to throw her off balance. But instead of crumbling, Kashish mentally shoved those thoughts to the farthest corners of her mind. This was her moment, and she refused to let Amit’s toxic negativity invade it.
“Your skills in yoga and meditation are impressive,” the interviewer noted. “But you haven’t taught professionally before. What makes you think you can handle it?”
“Life’s been my best teacher,” Kashish responded, her voice steady. “I’ve navigated change, overcome hurdles, and adapted. I know how to help others find their balance because I’ve had to find mine, time and time again.”
A week later, Kashish received an email—she had gotten the job.
Walking into the fitness center on her first day, Kashish felt a rush of exhilaration. Clients started trickling in, settling on their mats, looking at her expectantly.
As she guided them through poses and meditations, Kashish found her flow. Her words were precise, her instructions clear. For the first time in years, she felt like she belonged.
A few months later, Kashish’s classes became so popular that the fitness center offered her a full-time role, along with an opportunity to train new instructors.
Amit attended one of her classes, standing at the back, attempting the poses awkwardly. Afterward, he approached her.
“You’re good at this,” he said, his voice stripped of its earlier mockery. “Really good.”
Kashish looked at him, recognizing the subtle undercurrent of surprise in his tone.
“I always was, Amit. You just never saw it,” she said.
As Kashish continued to build her career, she realized she had something that couldn’t be outdated by technology or overshadowed by language barriers—her resilience and passion. She had defied the odds, shattered the unwarranted judgments, and in the process, discovered her true calling.
It was a big career transition for Kashish from being an IT personal to becoming a yoga instructor, but Kashish thrived—not as a relic of what she was supposed to be, but as an evidence to what she could become.
I am a photographer and an avid reader. I am not a writer but I like to give words to my emotions. I love to cook and hike. I believe in humor and its impact read more...
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If her MIL had accepted her with some affection, wouldn't they have built a mutually happier relationship by now?
The incident took place ten years ago.
Smita could visit her mother only in summers when her daughter had school holidays. Her daughter also enjoyed meeting her Nani, and both of them had done their reservations for a week. A month before their visit, her husband told her, “My mom is coming for 4-5 months!”
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Maybe Animal is going to make Ranbir the superstar he yearns to be, but is this the kind of legacy his grandfather and granduncles would wish for?
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