“What do you want to be when you grow up?”
Ha! that’s a question we face at different stages of our childhood!
Oh, in different forms too!
Be it a casual query, to write an essay on or the topic for a speech.
but, doesn’t the answer vary with age and grade?
At six, I wore a tee tied to my head and walked around in my “nun’s costume”
Alas! Blame it on my convent education then.
But like any other girl in town, Mom’s duppata became my saree,
for I took a ruler in hand and passed myself off as a teacher, at the age of ten.
Dad’s plush sofa sets became my students
the dents, chipped edges and scratches stood for the ruthless teacher that I was.
Mom’s vanity case became my best friend at thirteen
as I strutted around like an air-hostess with my colored cheeks and lips!
Ghoongroo defined me- I kept saying
and the winged kohl-eyes, tear-drop bindi, flower garlands and exotic jewelry-
completed my graceful looks-
‘cos at 15 I saw myself doing stage shows and signing autographs as a professional classical dancer.
But like any 90’s and early 00’s kid, I thought about being a doctor or an engineer!
and I signed the slam-books as Dr. Shalini, of course, I always dreamt a notch higher,
hell-bent on joining the Forces and graduating as a doctor from AFMC.
Broken dreams, shattered hope and bruised ego.
And I went about with being a post graduate in Engineering!
Still have the morsels of those lil’ dreams in me
A B.ed, own vanity bag and those big bold dramatic eyes are also my pride and joy!