Would I want to be reborn as a woman…hmmm, would I want a beard on my face???? Would I want to lose half my hair by the time I am 50??? …no I wouldn’t but I would like to have the freedom, the safety that men have. I would also like to get more pay for the same work……and freedom from constant waxing and threading.
As a child, I would want so much to be a boy because bhaiya (older brother) would be allowed late nights while I had to be back before nightfall. Little things would make me resent being a female but as I grew up, the true meaning of being a woman started to gradually sink in. The internal strength, the lighter side that shines through, the ability of being a child, friend and mother – all at the same time. The capability of undergoing pain to bring another life into the world, the independence of the mind to think and react.
From resenting the freedom that my brother had, I went to relishing the freedom that I have. I can dress like a boy and it would be fashionable. I can keep my hair short like a boy’s or have it flowing and long. I could choose not to work and just look after the house and nobody would bat an eyelid as against the choice to work and earn my own living. I can do what I want with my life. To be a woman is a matter of great pride; gone are those days when women were treated like social stigma. The fields are wide open. And I have more choices than the men I had grown up longing to be like. Maturity brought with it the realization that women see so many more shades of life than men ever do. It’s not done knowingly, it just comes naturally. The ability to see everything from the heart and still use the head, the pain and joy of bearing a child and seeing it grow, the protectiveness and the tenderness for a sister and a daughter and still the sternness when it comes to putting the message across, only a woman can do it. Working twice as hard to achieve the same goal and recognition, and once done, feeling that no man can ever reach there. Some of these I have experienced and the rest I will.
Being a woman means living a new experience everyday; a new smile for a new joy everyday. I want to experience everything that being a woman is. I want to touch, and even surpass the success achieved by Indra Nooyi; I want to be as dutiful and honest as Kiran Bedi. I also want to be as nice as the Parvati and Tulsi of the star network and as important as Margaret Thatcher; and I know I can achieve some of these dreams because I am a woman.
The best thing about being a woman means being so many things at the same time: It means being a little girl to your grandmother while being her support system; being a friend to your child while being a mother; being able to make biryani and plot monthly progress reports; understanding the difference between kishmish and sultana and knowing the importance of debt coverage ratio and ROE as well. It is only a woman who can teach the world the essence of love and life. So would I like to be reborn as a woman…….yes, I would because one lifetime is just too short to fully fathom the depths of being a woman.