If there’s one thing I’ve learnt in my 60 years here, it’s that women have to know to earn money even if they choose to be housewives. Now, independence in terms of finance can come later but it’s better to learn how to survive in case things don’t go per plan.
Take it from a wife who’s been working for over forty years now- being able to fend for oneself is the best feeling ever. Of course, mine did stem out of necessity but there’s at least a satisfaction that I’ve been able to keep the show up and running for my kids regardless of the hurdles.
It all started when I came to Chennai from my village at all of eleven. Education seemed a far-fetched luxury and I had to work through my teens, switching across odd jobs. At 17 life again threw in a big bomb the form of my marriage. And I say bomb because five years down the line ,with two infants at hand, I’d found out that my husband was an alcoholic. Even while I was pregnant, I was asked to go for construction work though I didn’t quite understand why. His reason of ‘preferring’ to stay indoors alongside a promise to take care of the household made me believe him blindly that I even handed over my wages to him everyday.
Nevertheless, things reached a tipping point eventually when I woke up to the plight of my reality. I had to become the breadwinner for our family of four, including my husband. I was wrecked, because I didn’t have any monetizable skill and was worried we’d end up further in the streets, especially since I’d always dreamed of giving my children a good education.
However, luckily my brother who was a small vendor himself, stepped up to help us and gave me the funds to start a flower stall. In time, I also actively got involved in his rice business and we’ve somehow been able to navigate together through all these years.
And after 2 decades of intense toil, I’m happy to see my daughter educated and standing on her own legs. As for my son, there hasn’t been a day we’ve not fought about his decision to quit schooling right after his 10th grade. All I wish for today, is for him to realize his mistake soon, and steer back into the right path!
#financialfreedom #financialliteracy #empowerment #life #hardships #breadwinner #smallbusiness #smallbusinessowner #madras #HumansofMadras