Being a woman

Being a woman,
She is expected to put on various masks
And sacrifice herself doing everything that they ask

For she was never told, that she could even say no
Always taught to keep her voice low

So she did put on her masks this time, but only to let the world know
That she is the woman who can do anything and make the whole world bow
For a woman’s strength, grit and love
Can lift you from the ground and thrust you up above.

Ashwini

Happy International Women’s Day!

I feel blessed everyday to be born as a woman because despite all the hardships we women go through (just because we aren’t born as men), we fight through it all and choose to make this world a better place for us and our girl tribe. A huge chunk of my life is surrounded by some spectacular women who inspire me everyday. We believe in a world where women uplift other women. It’s too easy to become cold in this harsh world, but it takes great amount of bravery to fight everyday for the things you want, places you want to be, careers you want to have.

Also a huge shoutout to the men who realize the need for an equal world for women. It’s convenient to step into a patriarchal world just because it’s been happening through ages, but change begins with at least one voice that would stand against it. Being a woman doesn’t have to mean that she’s secondary to a man. In an equal world, let the focus be on being partners.

To all the lovely ladies out there, here’s a reminder, you are so much more than your physical appearances and what the “society” says. You are what you choose to be. In this one life, don’t let others define you, you show them how you are meant to be defined. The power lies within you. All you have to do is unleash it.🔥👸🏻

P.S: This picture was taken at Wynwood Walls, Miami in Dec 2020. Hats off to the artist!

Her little book of dreams

When she was just a innocent little girl
She dreamt and wrote about things she would achieve in this world
She giggled and danced her way through adolescence
Always carrying her little book of dreams in her tiny hands

But the realities of the unjust world put her in a cage
Started tearing down her dreams page-by-page
People kept telling her how she should be holding a pan and a ladle
Or she was simply born to swing her baby’s cradle

She gathered all the tattered pieces of her broken dreams
And stuck them back together, a beautiful mosaic it seemed
She clutched the book even more closer to her heart
And stood up for all the girls whose dreams were torn apart

Ashwini

Epilogue:

All over the world, a girl’s education is deemed optional for her growth. Because according to some, a woman’s place is in the kitchen and not in a classroom or a workplace. Historically, this has been happening since centuries. But with changing times, even the society needs to evolve.

Women have the strength and power to run a household as well as a workplace. What they need is support and encouragement. Mostly importantly, we need to remember, when you educate a girl, you are educating a child. Let’s work on that! 👸🏻

Her beauty.

This time, she chose to be her own kind of beautiful

The beauty that goes beyond the color of her skin
And unveils the shades of her attractive soul

The beauty that surpasses the length of her hair
And uncovers the width of her smile

The beauty that isn’t measured by how fat or thin she is
But it adds up the weight of the love she carries

This time, she chose not to be just like them
But to be herself and that’s how she chose to be defined

– Ashwini

Epilogue: Women are constantly put into categories of being either too thin or too fat, too dark or not fair enough, there’s never a “perfect” woman. And these judgments are passed on by men and women both. Even if you say it in the most casual way, you don’t know how deeply it might affect the other person. Rather than classifying women based on their physical appearance, I hope we get to live in a world where men and women themselves recognize that life is so much more than just having a pretty face. It’s all about being a beautiful soul. 💫

She chose to be the voice

She chose to be the voice

For all the voices of women that go unheard

For the voices that have been silenced by years of patriarchy

For all the muffled cries of help that went unnoticed

For all the shoutouts that were muted in the battle of equality

She chose to be the voice that would echo through the mountains of restraint and let all the women know that they are not alone, they never were.

– Ashwini

It’s Women’s History Month and I have decided to write posts in the ongoing week dedicated to all the amazing women out there!

For anyone wondering why we need to celebrate women? Because, they aren’t celebrated enough in the real world. For the first day, the message here is, “Voice”. A lot of women out there are suffering only because they are told that no one would listen or care about what they speak. However, it all starts with one act of courage. The courage to fight against deep-rooted sexism. If you don’t speak up against something that’s wrong, it will keep repeating. Be the change you want to see in this world. Remember, it all starts with you. 👸🏻

PS: I was thinking of ideas for this project and I came across these powerful pictures of art from @wynwoodwallsofficial in my phone which I had shot during my last trip to Miami. What an inspiration! 🎨

Take a moment..

Take a moment from your walk back home
And walk into that cozy café that you see everyday
For once, just grab an empty table there
The one where you see groups of friends laughing
And the couples that sit on one of the corner tables
Where the fairy lights brighten up a dark winter evening
And the decor still reminds you of the holidays
Where a cup of cappuccino comes with a heart made out of cream
Don’t forget to smile at the small gesture
Instead of grabbing your phone, grab a nearby book or get one of your own
Or simply look around and see the world around you
The world that doesn’t just exist in your head
But is living and thriving with warmth and love
So instead of pouring out all your thoughts today
Ask the lovely waitress to pour you another cup of coffee
The one that comes with a heart
And take a moment to lean back and just live! ✨

– Ashwini

P.S: This picture was taken at one of my favorite cafes in Brooklyn, New York called Pasticceria Rocco. Have been a regular customer since last 5 years and I simply love this place!

Let’s go live on a tiny island..

Let’s go live on a tiny island filled with people like you and me
A place where the winds sway as they may, and the people breathe free

Where on days when it rains, we go dance with our favorite songs playing in our heads instead of trying to find a shelter
And when the sun comes out, we sit under a tree and bury our faces in books, sipping a seltzer
And on the coldest of days, when there’s nowhere to go, we’ll ignite the dried logs of our memories
Let them provide all the warmth we’ll ever need to get through a cold breeze

If you wonder what will happen to the people you would want to see
The ones that care would even walk on thin ice just for one more meet
The houses won’t be fancy, but for all their guests, they’ll always offer a seat
Where they all grab a bite together and drink some lemonade to escape the midsummer heat

It’ll be a home for lost souls who are wandering around looking for something
And it’ll be a solace for us, a paradise for our dreams to cling
For this island would welcome all those who dare to dream
And for the ones who don’t, a distant utopia it would seem

It might not be a place where there will be millions of things for you to do
But it will all be enough to last you a lifetime or maybe even two!


Ashwini

Internal and external freedom

Few years ago, I saw the Broadway show, Aladdin, in New York City. It really is one of my favorite Broadway shows and it does leave you spellbound. There was a scene in this show, where Aladdin asks the Genie that what would he want if the Genie was granted a wish. To which, the Genie replies, “I want freedom”. “Not the riches of a palace or exotic food, just my freedom.” He could’ve asked for any lavish thing in the world or any crazy imaginable thing for that matter. But, all he wanted was his freedom! Freedom from being enclosed in a metal lamp and being answerable to no one.

This tells us how freedom varies from person to person. For some, it’s being able to live lavishly and not having to worry about spending a single penny, whereas for some, it’s about not depending on material things for their happiness. For some, these palace walls are everything that they could dream of, the riches of this world at your feet, not ever having to worry about what to eat and where to get the money for buying food and yet, for some, these same walls are merely pillars which they want to climb out of. Because being able to afford such luxuries also means guarding yourself from the evil world.

When they’re looking out of this window, maybe someone wishes to live in a place like this, amidst these high walls. And there are some, who peek through the window and adore the view, awestruck at how beautiful the city looks, wanting to explore its small lanes and tiny shops. And yet, these same high walls which guard them from intruders could also feel like a cage sometimes.

We all here, seek freedom from a place and some seek freedom from their thoughts. Our mind has this amazing capability to store even the minutest of details. Once we start overthinking, it boggles our minds and causes so much chaos that it feels like it is going to explode. We search and search, for an escape, running through the long passages of memories we shared and passing through the garden of secrets. Sometimes, all you have to do is climb out of that window and take a walk, let peace find you in the most unexpected places. Let the beauty of this world and its people make you find the magic you’re looking for.

Most importantly, believe in the magic that resides within you. Be your own Genie and fulfill your wish. ✨

A timeless beauty

And some places, they remind you of a timeless beauty that exists through nature’s different courses

These trees, they provide shade to the people gathered with their families having fun
And yet, now with their leaves gone, these very trees, they glisten in the wintry afternoon sun

The residual snow reminds you of the howling winds that rattled your windows
And the playful laughs of the kids who jump with joy, every time it snows!

Some places, they instill the faith in you that every time you come back
The sun will always rise and shine to provide you some warmth in this New York cold.

PS: This picture was taken at Brooklyn, New York in Feb, 2020. What a beautiful mess it was! ☃️

Love in the time of Corona

We are close to completing a year since the COVID-19 pandemic started. How it has affected all our lives is yet to be fully measured. But I can’t seem to ignore the simple things that we usually forget to be grateful for. Most importantly, it helped us to recognize the value of love that already exists amongst us. Looking back, I couldn’t help but think about the people who reached out to me throughout the crazy phase and helped me stay sane.

There was a time when you couldn’t hug a friend but the 6 feet distance didn’t matter anyway. To see long forgotten acquaintances reach out to you to ensure you’re safe and healthy. The people who constantly checked up not only on your physical health but mental health as well. The long video calls that called for a happy hour or birthday celebrations and let’s not forget the Zoom weddings! For those staying away from family and friends, living a solitary life, how the anxious phone calls strangely seemed to calm down your nerves, being thankful to hear the voice of your loved ones. You didn’t feel the need to teleport through the laptop screen because the love that already exists was enough to endure through it all. It took us a pandemic to realize that the ones that care do find a way to show their love despite perilous circumstances.

Love could never be a weakness when all it has done is given us strength. To endure, through it all, together. These strange times reinstate that there exists a love that transcends space and time. There’s you and there are your people. The ones who cared and the ones who dared to love in the time of Corona. ❣️

P.S: I’m never gonna forget about the time when I was too scared to eat a slice of pizza!

A color for the sky!

Let’s choose a color with which you would want to paint the sky
How about the yellow that brings with it all the warmth and cheer?
The scorching orange ignites a fire, allowing to embrace my fierceness just how it spreads throughout the sky
Yet, the soft pink hues make you forget about everything and simply look up at the cotton candy world
The grey sometimes matches with the gloomy clouds of doubt, that later subside to make way for sunshine
And the dark black sky with its shining stars and the moon, reminds me of the universe where in we reside
I love how the blue sky brings out the different shades of the deep blue sea, almost feels like a cosmic love affair
So, how about we choose a sky that unfolds its own magic and we just sit and stare?