My journey to motherhood started with trauma. I was 3 months pregnant, and happily married for 11months. On the night of Dec 3rd, 2018, my life shattered.
My husband collapsed due to cardiac arrest, and I was devastated. I was pregnant and widowed and I was only 24yrs old.
What came after this was worse than that night itself. I had become the victim of many hate comments because, in India, if anything happens to the husband, a wife is to be blamed.
I was called unfortunate, “she didn’t take care of her husband”, “she didn’t cook for her husband, she was busy in the office”, “her horoscope is cursed” and what not! On the other hand, the little one inside me was also called “the baby who ate its father”
This horror felt like a repeated chapter. Because exactly 10years before this incident I had lost my beloved father in 2008.
My mother then raised me all alone, faced many challenges and made me strong. The lessons I had learned from that phase, had somewhere already made me capable enough to handle this. Easier said than done! I still fell into depression and wanted to kill myself.
However, it was my baby’s heartbeat that gave me hope. When I saw her on the scanning screen I knew, life was giving me a second chance. I decided to continue my pregnancy. Everyone said it was a very brave decision.
Many criticized the same saying “you’re too young to be a single mom”, “society does not accept single mothers”, “nobody will marry a woman with a child” Etc.
Many even advised having an abortion so I could remarry! I ignored all of this and only listened to my heart.
I continued my pregnancy, alongside my Job which I was working from home. I also sought therapy and started working on my mental health.
I started writing my feelings down and spent time on my hobbies. It took a ton of strength to put me back to life. Despite all this, I still was suicidal every now and then whenever I had any triggers.
Fighting this war, I finally gave birth in July 2019. When I first held her in my arms, I had happy tears. It was the first time in a very long time that I had genuinely smiled.
I decided to rebuild my life, for her and for myself. I promised to be the strongest version of myself and raise my daughter alone. My mother supported me throughout.
The struggles didn’t end here. I still had to face the snide comments from other women who believed widows were inauspicious.
My mother and I were not allowed to take part in my daughter’s naming ceremony because we were widows. I did not tolerate this and fought for my right. That day, I made up my mind to fight every single stereotype associated with widows and single mothers.
I have been sharing my views and experiences on social media and it makes me immensely happy that the content relates to so many women going through similar situations. Women must always stand up for one another.
We must stop discriminating against widows, divorcees, or single mothers and respect everyone equally. I hope to inspire women around me and wish to change the stigma around widows!