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My house-help asked excitedly, “I am going for wedding. Can you let me wear your red & black saree? To be honest I was stumped for a moment; I didn’t know what to say but I still said yes.
I lent a gorgeous saree to my house-help for a wedding in her family. Soon I stated getting questions if I would wear that saree again or if I was okay to be seen wearing the same saree my house-help was wearing?
We are all so conditioned to give our used clothes to our house-helps but are we okay to wear the clothes they were wearing?
A few days ago she came excitedly to me, “I am going for a family wedding. I want to wear your red & black saree, Ill wash and give it to you after the function. Please can you let me wear it?”
Sivaranjiniyum Innum Sila Pengalum (SISP) is an ode to all of the lost women, who could have been sports stars, singers, bankers, lawyers, doctors, just... happy, if they hadn't been enslaved in matrimony, and then forgotten all about.
One of the cool things about my mother was that she was an ace athlete and a champion sculler as a young woman in the 1950s and 60s. I only found out about this side of her a few years ago. I imagine her in a paavaadai dhaavani, taking on the mighty Kaveri river so many decades ago.
I recently watched a Tamil film anthology on SonyLiv that she would have liked to watch – Sivaranjiniyum Innum Sila Pengalum, (SISP) that has 3 stories of 3 different women – Saraswathi, Devaki, and Shivaranjini.
Like all the heroines in the anthology, my mother’s talents were sacrificed at the altar of matrimony. She pawned her gold medals and silver cups one by one to pay for expensive textbooks for us or a gift for a niece on her wedding, money for which she didn’t dare ask my father, because it was her niece… I remember how she caressed the cups and how her face hardened as she shoved them into her bag to take to the jewellers.
Bhavna Toor is the founder and CEO of Shenomics, a mindful-leadership coaching platform to help women live and lead from within.
Bhavna has been mentoring women and impact entrepreneurs for the last 4 years, most recently as an entrepreneur-in-residence at the GSF Global Accelerator and previously as the CEO and Director of the National Social Entrepreneurship Forum in India.
Prior to transitioning to impact entrepreneurship, Bhavna led a successful 8-year long corporate career in finance, most recently as a Vice President and Client Portfolio Manager at Lazard in New York, where she managed product and business development for various hedge fund strategies on its $7 Billion+ Alternative Investments platform.
Tina Garg is the Founder and CEO of Pink Lemonade, a creative agency specializing in communication, content, and design. Starting the company in October 2009, Garg has worked relentlessly to ensure its astounding growth rate. She has channelled her passion for writing, design, corporate communication strategy, branding, content development, and advertising into her work to remain at the top of her game.
Garg was chosen from among 10,000 women in the world to be coached by Goldman Sachs and ISB, as part of the ‘10,000 Women’ program which provides women entrepreneurs business and management education, mentoring and networking, and access to capital. Apart from this, Garg is a mentee at the Cherie Blair Foundation, which also supports women entrepreneurs across the globe.
Before starting out on her own, Garg had been an Internal Communications Specialist at Ernst & Young. She also worked as a content writer at CBEYOND and a Communications Coordinator at Murray Culshaw Consulting.