Over at Quora the other day people were having a chat about the surprising strength of the human spirit. Fear is a given in life. It;s how we handle our fears and how we overcome is what matters. Often we surprise ourselves with the power that lies below. We are our own heroes... even just for one day. The question was asked....
Dad is Coming!Giphy
I'm going anonymous on this heart-wrenching story as it has legal implications, still in process.
This is written against the backdrop of a very messy divorce wherein my deranged wife was trying every below-the-belt dirty trick to try and get what she wanted - $12,000 per month for herself so she could live like a princess without working - in essence to fuel her life she chose which was basically a non-stop erotic cabaret.
Up until our split, we lived in a beautiful house, 2 full-time servants, luxury cars - I did all the work AND looked after my two most exceptionally beautiful, smart and sensitive boys, aged 3 and 5 years respectively. She contributed nothing, except sleep, have coffee meetings, party, and as I suspected was messing around with anything that moved - as in dead policeman and rolls of barbed wire weren't safe!
At this point it is important to note that at this stage we were living apart and the children were living with me - her choice. She was advised by both her lawyer and our independent arbitrator that her chances of getting anything were slim. She went to the Family Court, fabricated physical abuse (I have never hit a woman ever), obtained an interim protection order forcing me to pay her the $12 000 per month PLUS all the boys' expenses, thereby enslaving me whilst simultaneously denying me access to my children, whom I loved and cared for more than anything…and then she did the unthinkable…
Under the pretense of 'taking the boys to a birthday party,' she put them on a plane, taking them to a city 1000 miles away to live with her grand parents. The protection order forbade me going within 150 yards of her or her abode. My boys were so confused - they had suddenly been ripped away, without preparation, from their home, their main psychological reference points, their dog and cat, their au pair, their friends, their school… they sounded so, so devastated when I spoke to them by phone. I took advice from lawyers, a psychologist and social workers, all saying pretty much the same thing:- "You have to get the boys back quickly!"
On a Friday morning, being day 5 after their snatching, I surreptitiously established they had been dropped off at relative's home. I knew she would only be back the next day - after all it was Friday and she would have to party all night! I caught the last plane that night, fetched a rental car, drove to the suburb where they were staying, put the seat down and tried to get some sleep.
At 6:30 the next morning I drove to the house where they were and parked half a block away. The house was ultra-secure, high walls, electric fencing, CCTV etc. Looking through a gap in the gate I could see my youngest playing in the front garden. I pressed the buzzer and the gate opened! I walked inside, picked up my surprised youngest in my arms, I was then greeted by the also very surprised maid who knew me, as well as the situation. She asked what I was doing there. I said I've just come to drop some clothes and toys off for the boys. I asked my youngest where his brother was, he said still sleeping and showed me where he was. I picked him up out of bed and carried both, asking the maid to open the gate for me. She asked why and I said I just need to fetch the clothes and toys from the car. She opened the gate!!!
I ran for the car, one boy on each hip, telling them we were going on holiday, and trying to assure them that everything is OK. I hit the highway, turning my phone off whilst trying to hold back the tears. We drove 8 hours and finally booked into a guest farm in the desert.
That night when I put my beautiful boys to bed my eldest said to me "Dad, I want to thank you for saving me, this is the best day of my life." Anonymous
Better Luck Next Time.
Long story ahead!!! Be careful…
Manager of my 1st company is in jail now, as police took strict action on my F.I.R.
It's very long ago, That was the beginning of my career. I joined a very small company after passing out from college.
That was a small organization which had hardly 24-25 employees (including 1 team leader and 1 HR)
The boss or the owner was not good overall in nature, (I heard a few stories from female colleagues about sexual harassment)
Everything was going fine till the day when I needed 2 days off from office for a personal reason.
I approached my team leader to follow the hierarchy. But he said boss(owner of the company) had strictly warned both the team leaders not to allow anyone to grant leave without his permission.
So I went into the cabin of our boss for the same reason. I told him the whole scenario. He said, its ok you can take leave but asked me to meet him at 05:00 pm so that he would make sure, no one else is granted leave on those days.
I thought it was logical and fine. (So I went again to his cabin at around 5 while everyone else was leaving the office)
Some of my colleagues were passing a smile at me. (They must have thought I had compromised to my boss)
I entered the room, the boss was relaxing on his chair. I repeated the whole scene once again.
He got up from his seat and touched my hand as he was telling, "its okay, take leaves of as many days as you want."
I felt something fishy there, but I wanted to be sure about his intention.
Then he said, As you are going on holiday next week, why don't you join me on dinner today evening. After which we can take a rest on the hotel.
The whole scene was clean now. He was offering me a night stay with him in indirect words.
well, as I already mentioned my friends were passing a smile at me when I entered, exactly at that time. I turned on the camera of my phone and put it on the side pocket of my jeans.
So now this was my turn, there was no one except a peon, I and my bloody boss in the office. Peon was busy in the pantry which I know.
I held his both the shoulders and kicked on his testicles very tightly and said "better luck next time." I took out my mobile phone and played the video from starting. He was sweating badly and asked me how dare you to do this?
I sat on the chair next to him and said, "Do you know what I can do with this recording"? I left the office for the day and came home. I left that job after clearing all my dues.
My intention was to give him 1 more chance to realize his mistake. But after thinking for 2-3 days, I went to the police station with my father and registered an FIR.
That person is behind the bars now.
This is something which changed my whole life. Also, this was the bravest thing Which I have ever done. Sarika T
Okay... Certainly there are people out there who have faced harder life than me and much more brave than me... But nonetheless, this is my story..
I dated him for more than two years and were totally in love with each other..at least I thought so. Then one day he told me that he is getting engaged to some other girl and we broke up. Details of the break up are not so necessary here but it's impact on me is the point.
I had suicidal thoughts on my mind for two months after the breakup. I lost 7kgs of weight in 3months. I stopped taking care of myself. I saw him every day. We worked together every day in same team. He seemed unaffected and was preparing well for his engagement with good diet plan sitting right beside me. I wanted to quit my job or at least switch to another one. I became a loner and went inside my shell. Watching him chat with his fiancee was killing me. And among all this he got engaged. He came to office with sweets. And yeah.. All this while he didn't forget to give me a sympathy dose from time to time. There was still 4 months time between his engagement and marriage... And this is what I decided to to:
1. Had two pieces of sweets he brought after engagement and congratulated him.
2. Did NOT block him on WhatsApp or Facebook but never spoke anything personal with him after that.
3. I ate well. Dressed well. Mixed up with people and watched movies.
4. I did NOT quit or switch my job. I never like to quit succumbing to circumstances without giving a tough fight. I continued to work with him professionally.
5. I ignored his requests to meet or speak to him. It was very tempting to get back to all that.. But I didn't.
6. If I wanted to, it was easy to create a scene. Mess up with his fiancee or involve parents or emotionally blackmailing with texts... BUT I CHOSE TO LET GO!
7. I smiled and laughed at the jokes and teases in office groups. *No one knows we were dating* It killed me at that time.
8. He got married and went on honeymoon. I was killed somewhere deep inside. But I shouldered his entire office responsibilities single handedly. Travelled alone to different cities during this time and focused on work.
9. He is now back from honeymoon. I still see him everyday. Things seem a lot more tough again but I will continue and I will not quit.
Why do you Worry?
Most frightening moment of my life, was a narrow escape. It was 9 years back from now. The city where my college was not a very safe one to roam around at nights, one of the infamous cities in western Uttar Pradesh.
At this particular day, my friend, who lived in the same city but another college, came to my place. We had fun, did crazy stuff, ran and laughed out loud on roads, ate street-food, went to watch the Bollywood movie Tare Zameen Par and felt awesome. It was one of those awesome days when your cheeks hurt because you laughed too much. We were back at my hostel by evening.
Now, she had to catch her train at around 10:45 or 11:00 at night, she had to leave for her hometown. We had had so much awesome time together that the idea of stopping the fun at 8:00 PM just like that didn't sound good.
Someone said we will go Railway station to drop her and will be back within time. For reference, Railway station was at another end of city and it usually took more than an hour to reach there. I was little uncomfortable with the idea but, so high was our energy that I would have sounded a spoiler if insisted them to stay. And I was feeling little awkward that she was actually my friend and everyone except me was excited about seeing her off (yeah, seems funny now).
Then I thought to myself "there is risk everywhere, you can't sit back home scared. And moreover it's just this natural instinct of fear which is almost always there but does something horrible happen every time? Nah. you are being too timid. We are five girls, will handle anything."
After a small debate and session of getting ready, we left hostel chit-chatting and giggling and laughing. The only commutation to station was City Bus.
We boarded, continuing our jokes and all. After one and a half hour, we reached station. Station was almost stranded or at least no considerable number of trustworthy people there but it was safe inside at platform.After checking platform number and train running status and finally seeing her off, we started back, exiting the station. Suddenly all the noise and laughing we were making started echoing in our heads. The silence outside the station was horrifying. It was quite dark and station was nowhere near the city. We had to cross a road with jungle both the sides. Sound of railway announcement was still heard in background.
We were tired by now and little scared too. Though we kept on talking, because maybe no one was saying that she was actually scared.
In front of the railway station, at the other side of road, was the city bus stand but no bus seemed ready to leave. And oh it was 10:30 by now, somehow we were late as per our plan. We got really scared for how would we go back!
Suddenly a sigh of relief! There was one bus with a driver inside and lights on.
We ran towards the bus, the bus driver looked at us and started the engine. I stopped for a moment as there was no one else in the bus and my gut wasn't telling me anything good about it. But aha! As soon as we came near the gate there was conductor running towards it and other passengers who must have been waiting for the bus to be started, appeared and took their respective seats.
We confirmed with driver if this bus would go to the place we wanted to go because the sign was for somewhere else, he was affirmative but seemed in hurry. I thought to myself that he must be starting bus hurriedly because he was being nice that few girls were there alone in a winter's night, that too at a place where no other female was in sight.
Everyone of us knew what kind of risk we had taken and by then I had started feeling a mix of depression, discomfort and excitement. Between those moments we talked about Empowerment. And beneath our words was lying a truth which mocked the shallowness of this word and kept us scared all the time.
We got seated, relaxed. Our smiles were back and now we started recalling whatever we did whole day, laughing and swearing….suddenly me and my room-mate started feeling weird, we were not able to explain this to others but we sensed something was wrong. We got quiet, noticed that the passengers who were sitting at random places are all now sitting at the seats beside driver. And they all are friends. And we all were just noticing, without talking to each other. Then I realized that the conductor and driver and everyone else were friends. All fun vanished and brain started to calculate every possibility of worse. It was hard to believe that they were not random passengers.
I looked out of the window and this was the beginning of the moment when I was most frightened. We were not on the road towards city, it took us somewhere off road. By this time we all knew where this was heading. I don't know when did this happen but we all were holding each other's hands. I looked back inside the bus and what I saw was worse than a bad nightmare, dramatic, scary and unimaginable.
They were happy as if preparing for a feast. I just can't tell anyone ever what actions they were doing, most of which I did not understand then and realized later in my life when grew up.
Those were almost 8-9 men. This was the moment I was most frightened ever in my life. That moment was passing too slow, I saw everything in slow motion. I am still not able to explain the horror. All my senses faded, I could only hear their devil laughter over bus's running sound. One of us started crying and trembling and said she was going to jump out of the bus, other one was holding her religious locket and started praying.
Somehow my brain was still working and I took my phone out. In the mightiest effort of my life, as loud as I could be, I pretended to talk to someone and said "Hello, uncle! Yes, we have started from here."
That railway station was near Cantonment area, one thing in our favor. So, I used this fact and said "But these guys are not taking us via the cantt road in front of your house. What? Bus number?"
I shouted at driver, completely ignoring what was going on (believe me that was the most difficult thing I have ever done, ignoring those) "Bhaia! Bus ka number kya hai? aur ye kaha se le kar ja rhe ho, mere uncle cant road se idhar aa rahien hain gaadi lekar. Apna gadi ka number batao jaldi."
Translation: "What is this Bus's number? And what weird route you are taking, my uncle is coming from Cantt road towards our bus in his car. Tell me the bus number."
"Oh it's written in front of me." I shouted and started citing the bus number on phone to my imaginary uncle.
In city buses the bus number is mostly written behind driver's seat.
He didn't respond. Other men carried on doing what they were doing. By this time I knew we are not going to reach anywhere tonight. I wanted to cry. Moreover I so damn regretted not forcing everyone to stay back. I felt extreme guilt and anger over everyone's immaturity, including myself.
They were celebrating. Driver seemed little nervous and I, with all my fake confidence, started shouting at him about the route. I was behaving as if we were not frightened and totally unaware that they were preparing for something devilish. Others got courage too and tried to not look frightened.
Something happened, he suddenly turned the bus and speeded like anything. In a short time we were at main road and market area was near. Our frozen blood started getting warm and we almost jumped off the bus and while we were getting down, the conductor hanged from the gate almost over me and said in that type of voice, you understand right?
"arey ghar tak pahuncha kar ayenge ham log tension kya hai?"
Translation: Oh c'mon! We can drop you ladies till your home. Why do you worry?
If I had claws I would have cut his tongue out, I swear.
We found another bus which was safer and full with people. Though most of them were laborers and workers (not that I am labeling laborers as someone you can't travel with, but just sharing what my mindset was at that time and still today I don't feel a lot safe around these people) but still it was inside city and there were few elderly people as well. We didn't speak a word to each other. Reached our hostel. Managed a late entry, banged the door and just didn't sleep that night.
I was in 11th and in a new school. After 12 years of being in a convent school, it was difficult for me to adjust to this new school where people abused, made out in every isolated place they could find in the school premises, smoked in washrooms among others. Unfortunately I happened to date someone from the same school at that time (someone I could never think of dating today). For obvious reasons we had broken up when things started to get screwed up for me. And yes, it was my first love so I was heartbroken ( or believed in the illusion of a heartbreak). Now that I have explained the background details, I'll pen down what happened after that.
Someone supposedly from my previous school abused someone from my new school and this spread like fire. The English teacher (she happened to be a past student of the same convent) came to class and started abusing the girl and the convent. She went on to say how that girl does not deserve to live and many other derogatory things which were uncalled for. I stood up and told her how she had no right to comment on the integrity of someone's character and of the school she herself had studied in. She went and told everyone that I had back answered. From then on every teacher started discriminating me for no reason. They failed me in Physics and Maths for no reason. I got the lowest grades in English repeatedly.
My class teacher insulted my mother in every parent-teacher meeting. Also i had left her English tuition ( I happened to be one of her favorite students until I left her tuition). I was pissed. One day while I was returning from the washroom, coincidentally I happened to pass by my ex bf. We neither talked or looked at each other. The English teacher saw us passing by and caught me. She accused me of bunking class to meet him ( She didn't have the courage to say anything to my ex because he belonged to the oh-so-dreaded commerce section). And then she hit me for breaking the code of conduct. For the first time in my entire life a teacher had hit me. That too for no reason. She hit me repeatedly. I went and complained to the head mistress. Nothing much was done because I had a tarnished reputation ( during that time my dad had an heart attack and I was far from thinking about breakups, boy friends blah blah). And on top of that my ex-bf and his friends started spreading that I had slept with him. For a 11th standard kid, that was hell (I did cry my eyes out unless I realized I had no reason to. I was seventeen).
He was in the school hall during the break time, making fun of me, explaining people how he did me ( for him I sure was an accomplishment). I went and slapped him 5 times stating him the reason for each slap in front of the entire school. What followed was not decent but it made me proud as I didn't choose to take shit from him or that teacher unlike many others would have. I had the courage to not think of the consequences and stand up for what I believed was right.
But, no matter how much I try I can never overcome the trauma that they made me go through in 11th. I literally stopped interacting with anybody in school after the incident. I have become more cautious in life about choosing my acquaintances. But something in me has not changed, I might be hurt, insulted, challenged, but I'll still stand for what is right without thinking of the consequences. I always will.
This incident happened in July 2009 when I was returning home from work at 11 pm (yeah.. IT company).. It had become my routine working 13 hours a day in my company. I used to board the 10:40 Guindy to Egmore (Chennai, India) train and reach Egmore at 11pm and wait for bus number 20 series to go to my home in Ayanavaram. While I was waiting that day, there was a lady sitting on the bus stand with some cloth bundle beside her (couldn't see what was inside it). She was completely lost in thoughts and I was minding my own business thinking what to do with my life (I was 21.5 yrs old). Later, couple of street dogs came and started sniffing the cloth bundle and to my surprise the baby inside the cloth bundle starts crying (one of the dogs must have licked/touched the baby). I was immediately horrified and went near the woman who is still indifferent to what was happening around her and saw the baby inside the cloth bundle and the dogs beside it. I drove away the dogs and started asking questions to that woman.
Me : Akka, andha kolandha ungaludha??( sister, is that baby yours)
Woman: amam (yes)
Me: yen ipdi inga okarthirtkeenga?? neenga enga poreenga (why are you sitting here, where are you goin?)
Woman (breaks down) and tells me that she belongs to Thirukalugukundram village in Chengalpet district which is near Chennai and her husband is part of a construction crew working in Chennai. He admitted her in Govt General Hospital for her labor two days ago and he absconded the next day after knowing that the baby was a girl. She went on to say that the wards at GH threw her out once she couldn't pay them and left her on the street that evening. she came to the railway station with the intention of going to Chengalpet but she didn't have the money to go to Chengalpet and then from there to her village. I inquired if her parents had a mobile to inform her whereabouts but she said they don't have one.
I asked her if she had had anything to eat and then offered the half packet britannia biscuits I had in my office bag. I took her to a restaurant and we ate there. She fed the child and we came to Egmore station at 12:30 am. I checked the charts for train timings and realized that there was no train to Chengalpet at that time. I called a cab and we started the 70 km journey at 1am. throughout the journey I was also terrified n skeptical of being robbed, assaulted and all other bad things that could possibly happen to me(yeah, too many films and stories).
We reached there around 2:15am to her parents surprise and they were thankful. I gave her 2000rs which was there in my pocket and told her to take care of herself.
Started the return journey at 3am and came back to my house at 4:30am. When my mother inquired I told her I had work and slept with satisfaction like a baby.
I went back to work at 9am sharp like I always do and there was a deep sense of satisfaction with myself. Maheswaran R
In 2007, I was like really curious and excited to Clear CAT and get into IIMs (Top MBA college in India). But I failed, I got like 99 percentile but missed the cut off in verbal (Got around 90 percentile).
Again, I wrote CAT in 2008 with much better preparations. This time I got 95++ Percentile in each of sections with 99++ Overall but analyzing cut-offs , I figured I missed cut off by a mark each in different sections of each college. This really pissed me off and I decided not to bother to get into IIM again. But I was feeling totally dejected. So to prove a point , that it wont be IIM who reject me but other way round. I wrote CAT again in 2009. This time I got 99.88 percentile with 99+ percentile in each section. Had calls from IIMA , IIMC , IIMK and IIMI. But as I had already decided , I proved my point and did not attend interview for any of institute. I was feeling really good about me , that I proved a point that I wanted to prove.
In India , doing such a thing is never easy. My parents called my cousin in London , who had studied in IIT and IIM to reconsider my decision as it would really be stupid to let go of such an opportunity. All of family and friends tried to convince me so hard.
And what was most difficult in this was, my business had failed, I had small loan (2.5 lac) to repay. No current source of income. No money to pay my office bills too. But it all fell in place. Within a month after this I started new business, earned more then what 99% of CEOs in India would earn over next 3 years. Invested in a flat. Took almost complete year off on recreations activities and doing what I loved doing including travel (Earned enough to afford a year long holiday).
I am still not sure what I did was right or wrong but am happy and willing to take responsibility for my decision. I am happy that I stood for what I believed in. Rohit B
Stay With Him.
On 8th July, a Tuesday morning, I was going to saloon, seen this poor thing beside a road side tea stall. He was drenched totally in last night rain. His body matted with dirt. First I thought he was dead. Felt little sad and left, walked two steps, turned to look at him, still don't know why, for one more time and noticed his chest is moving and he was still breathing. Got excited and touched him. He opened eyes and began to growl (he was in terrible pain). Caught him and took him to our hostel parking. He was afraid and trying to escape. But he couldn't. Something ran over him. His spine and hind legs were useless. All night he drenched in rain. He was tired and possibly hungry. Bought some milk and tried to feed him. But he was still growling and dragging his body away from me.
Secured a cardboard box to put him in it. This time he bit me. I left him there to clean my wound and went to find a veterinary center. Luckily found a veterinary hospital. Receptionist told me to wait till 9 am. Returned to the hostel and collected my things. But someone took the cardboard box. So I took him to hospital in a carry bag. A nurse cleaned him while I was holding him. When the nurse put a needle in his body to administrate saline mixed with medicine, my eyes welled-up tears. The doctor said his survival chances are very low and told me to bring him three more days. All the day I stayed with him, first in office and then in hostel.
It's sad that he didn't survive and died on the same day.
While feeding milk to him, cleaning him, being with him all day, I found a true meaning of happiness. Actually I didn't help him. He helped me by serving me some joyous moments staying with me.
Once, a long time back ago, I am still a child then, a puppy died trapped in a drain pipe. It was crying all night for help. No one helped and me too. My dad strictly ordered me not to do anything. His logic was that we didn't own the puppy and so it's none of our business and nobody was helping it, so you shouldn't also.
So helping the cat on that day is the bravest thing I ever did. Because I proved to myself that one don't need anything and anybody to do what is right, which i knew, but never did. On that day i broke myself free from my own confinement.
PS: Several people teased me for helping the cat. They said they would have used the money I spent on the cat in a better way if gave it to them. They laughed on me like I did something foolishly awkward for being good to a stray cat.
why people say such things? Srinivas R
I was home for my semester vacations. Complete family gathered under one roof of our native. It was evening and elders of family were sitting together outside hall and were discussing something that looked so important. The discussion was on it's heat or I say peak when I went there searching for my mother. Staying there for sometime I got to know that the topic of discussion was kids of neighborhood.
The discussion was something like "These days kid, they have forgotten moral values, they don't respect their elders decision. They roam out for complete night with other stupid boys & girls and lie about that home. They don't attend their classes, they expense money on illegal things, and more like that..."
The temper of the discussion was taking place in such a scene that at first someone else will get a thought either they don't have children or their children are total serene or role model staying all time in front of their eyes.
I don't know what happened with this idea in my mind, I interrupted their conversation. I have to tell you that it is considered a ill-manner to interrupt when elders at our place are in serious discussions. I probably have never done it before!
"Next, all eyes were at me, not for the interruption but what I said simply in a loud tone. What if, someone outside of our family will talk the same about your kids, Will you find it likewise interesting, funny or prestigious??" Suddenly all the noise and murmuring vanished. I continued, I too live at a different place, where you people are not present to observe me. Do you know that even I do the same stuff or as if that you are pretending that you don't know. Kids have to live life in accordance with the life of place. And things are not same everywhere. Things that looks wrong, may not be wrong. There are reasons for it. And, how could you judge someone and talk anything before knowing what is it."
Then I walked out from the place. That day on-wards no one enjoys about talking ill and judging behavior of neighbor or other kids of family. I don't know if they continue but I never found it again!
Well this is not something brave but this has changed the way my family receives me. I believe changing our home will change society. I feel good of that and it looks like my bravery at-least to me.
Thanks, if you have given me your time reading all this! Shashi R