She sobbed when despite delivering her best she was entitled as the runner up in the fancy dress competition of the Montessori section.
She wept when she was punished by her teacher in the primary class just because of a talkative group was caught, though she was nowhere involved.
She was excruciated when they said ‘No’ to her despite her good acting skills. She longed to play Cinderella in the high school play, but the lead role was passed on to her friend.
She mourned even after receiving the versatile artist award in her school’s graduation ceremony. Draped in a serene white saree, her classmates laughed at her proclaiming she looked *weird* in white.
She was distressed when despite performing extraordinarily in the finale an ordinary girl was crowned as Ms. Fresher of her college and she ended up again being a runner up.
She was demoralized as after being rewarded as one of the brightest students of her college in the convocation ceremony, she was mocked by her college-mates claiming that her degree was of no use.
She was shattered in disdain after being placed in a reputed technical firm because of her immense qualifications. Her colleagues used to stare at her with sheer disgust which resulted in her resigning.
She was shocked after facing the first ever rejection from a guy whom the family proposed for an arrange marriage setting. And those relatives wouldn’t miss a chance to demean her further.
What for? Well, just because her dusky complexion (typically Indian skin texture) took a toll on her dreams in every single phase of her life. Was it justified enough to lose every opportunity knocking her door with a close shave? Certainly Not! But, despite facing a heap of rejections in her life, she didn’t lose but chose to look up instead. She decided to retrospect and ponder that in spite of having all those calibers that made her succeed, what actually went wrong in her way. After prolonged meditation and self-counseling, she realized it had been none other than her underrated mental stature that was the sole reason of all her agonies and dismay.
It’s not only hers, mine or your story but practically many Indian women are facing judgmental conflicts based on their appearances. It was later when a momentous memory changed my entire mindset towards life! I remember while I had visited Qutab Minar, Delhi, I encountered an American mother-daughter duo who had arrived there to have a glimpse of the diverse heritage of India. I have always been fond of kids and they too love my company. Seeing that 5 year old little girl, I couldn’t resist but to approach her and interact for a while. She smiled at me with those innocent twinkling eyes and then rushed back towards her mom. Now the conversation that followed between the two actually touched my sensitive chords to the core and left me numb.
The little one asked her mom while pointing at me;— “Mom! How beautiful she is, though she’s not white like us!” The lady nodded and smiled back, explaining her with utmost calm….
“Beauty is only skin deep and beyond any color. Not just white, but every other color of the rainbow is significantly beautiful. She is beautiful not because she’s black, brown or white, but because she’s ‘pure’… pure from inside. Her modesty, simplicity and qualities together make her beautiful. All Indians are beautiful not just because of their complexion but because of their inherent values, culture and tradition that set them apart from the rest.
She is darker because God created her first. He fell in love with His very first baby. So, he created many more like her with a beautiful heart inside. And then one day He thought of experimenting with all the shades of white and black to make the world seem as diverse as the heritage of her country (India). So He painted His new creations (like us) to white and He loved them too. But that’s just an outer shell. From inside, we all are dark, we all are the same and dusky is divine.”
Then she came to me and said; “Hey! I want to look like you! What can I do? Should I sunbathe or would you like to share your personal recipe to achieve that brazen and brassy glow of your skin?” And I simply smiled in return and thanked her! It was then that I realized how Indian complexion is appealing to the fairer world and not what it is perceived by some. And the world certainly strives to *Look Like Indian*. 🙂
Right after that day, she too, boldly stood up and regained that lost confidence in her and proclaimed her soul “Yes I can do it and I am capable of any and every thing” and this was it— all the boost that she needed to touch the zenith with her sky-high spirits. She gave a damn to all those hypocrites who had been dejecting her because of her wheatish skin-tone all the way. She attained that chutzpah to speak up to the world that she didn’t need to be fair but rather flamboyant to survive in this dark, devil world of complexities. Yes, she proved herself fittest in the struggle of her existence as an Indian girl who was being judged in the mere name of her appearance.
Today SHE, (me) is a successful Indian fashion blogger who is being praised for her dusky beauty and unprecedented aplomb to take the world in her stride. It is her confidence to carry herself that exhibits in her inner aura. She didn’t demand respect but ‘earned’ it with her firm determination and will power.
Being an Indian, I was always hurt hearing about racism and color discrimination at different junctures of my life. However, after that very incident, I realized that India shines above all. People from all over the world set their standards to that of our country as their source of inspiration because we have what it takes to ignite minds and illuminate souls. And Lufthansa definitely reflects the ethos of India’s rapidly growing global influence through this soul-stirring and uplifting commercial that gives a valiant answer to everyone as to why people aspire to be #MoreIndianThanYouThink.