I believe you would have been waiting for the newsletter on Sunday and our apologies that we missed sending it out on time. Too many things are happening at our end, more on this later.
Recently, someone asked me what is the kind of person I want to be and who do I really look up to. And I started thinking because I didn’t have a name in place but now I do.
I want to share a little bit about someone who has played a very important role in my life.
This letter is a little personal and very special.
The idea for today’s letter is to acknowledge a person’s constant & consistent efforts in being right next to the other person, through thick and thin. While building a company, one thing that matters the most is having the right set of support.
As some of you know, I was brought up in a fairly small industrial town in Maharashtra. With limited exposure and resources, one thing I learned was to dream big and imagine the impossible. All thanks to my mother, who is truly one of the strongest and most inspiring people I have ever met.
My mom, unlike me, had a very different upbringing. She was born in Punjab, in a family where her father was working in Indian Railways. Despite the environment in those days where women weren’t allowed to pursue higher education or work in a professional capacity or do things they really wanted to do, my grandparents had a very unorthodox thought process and wanted their daughter to truly experience life.
Early on, she was sent to boarding for schooling and then later to a college hostel in Amritsar to pursue her higher education. These details might not sound admirable but to send a young girl in the 1960s to a boarding school was pretty much not the norm. The reason these details are important is that this is where I believe the early seeds of mom’s personality were sown.
Alongside pursuing her graduation, my mom was also actively playing cricket, representing her college, city, and state during those years. Well, I couldn’t believe this either that she played cricket in the 1980s when the game is just starting to get popular. That’s my mom for you - unpredictable, talented, and impressive.
My mother did her master's in education and after getting married, wanted to teach young kids and help them dream bigger. Unfortunately, life had different plans for her and she couldn’t get to teach because my dad was working around the clock, and with 2 young children in the house, one of them had to take up the responsibility of raising the kids.
Reflecting back, my mom does regret that she was never able to fulfill one of her dreams of teaching in a professional capacity but this regret of her fades away the moment she looks at how her boys have turned out to be. This gets further validated when people in her circle compliment her on how well her children are doing in their respective lives.
On some days, one thing that really hurts my mom is that she wasn’t able to earn a penny in her life and she sometimes feels her life is a waste. You know, we all have similar thoughts with our lives as well at one point or the other.
Over the last few years that I’ve closely observed her, she is fearless, understanding, supportive and honest with people she really cares about. I think, one of the best things about her is that she is able to think like 20-year-old something while speaking to a person of that age.
I have been living on my own for the last decade or so and I speak with my parents, pretty much, every single day. Every time I speak to my mom, her words encourage me to do better when she says things like - “early days are always tough, you will figure it out”, “better days are coming, just hold your fort”, “you are destined to make it big”, etc.
Building a company/brand requires way too much effort, hard work, sleepless nights, etc. and to be able to do this without someone’s constant support and motivation is very very difficult.
That being said, I'm so so grateful to have unparalleled support and love from my mother as we go about building Perfora.
Btw, a very Happy International Women’s Day to all the incredible women out there. I hope we celebrate women more often and recognize their contributions, all the time.
I know I could have written this letter on Women’s Day or Mother’s day but I felt, I don’t want to wait for any special occasion to communicate what I really want to communicate.
My mother has my heart and she will always be my source of inspiration. And I can proudly say, I want to be a person like my mom i.e. confident, understanding, and supportive.
In case, you are wondering, my mom’s name is Dolly Bawa. I told you, everything about her is different, even her name, considering she was born in the 1960s :D
If you would like to share with me what kind of person do you want to be, I’m all ears :)