Inspiration comes from the most unlikely of sources’. I could never decipher the true meaning of the saying until I met her.

It was a beautiful spring evening in Guwahati. A group of excited new trainees accompanied by their concerned parents had gathered in the picturesque company campus. While every trainee in sight was excitedly chatting away with their future colleagues, she stood silently in a corner, least interested in interacting with her new companions and rarely exchanging a word or two with her tall and exceptionally well-built companion.

She was beautiful enough to make heads turn and her gait expressed something beyond mere confidence. As we paired up for the boarding formalities, I initiated a conversation with her.

“Hey, where are you from?” I asked.

She looked up shortly from her documents, answered “Delhi”.

She immediately turned her gaze away from me. Her lack of interest in the conversation offended me and I mentally noted not to talk to her again. But as my fate had it, I was wiping her teary eyes after an hour and encouraging her for the new journey, away from home.

 Even though we shared the same flat, I found it difficult to bond with her. Her outspoken attitude carried an unusual dominance which kept most of us away from her. As our hectic schedule kicked in, I got used to her or rather learnt to ignore her unexpected fits of anger and unpredictable tears which were often triggered by petty issues.

But she was a tough nut to crack. While most of us were fighting a daily war with assignments and surprise tests, she remained unnerved and optimistic in every situation.

Though her performance was not up to the mark and most of us refrained from helping her due to her repulsive attitude, she never gave up. Her efforts were probably the reflection of her immense inner strength and determination.

Building a professional life away from home is probably the biggest challenge for a fresh graduate. While our lives got complicated with professional demands, relationships and heartbreaks for some, she always maintained a distance from the guys in our batch, including the popular ones. It seemed to be the aftermath of a heartbreak and I assumed that she was not strong enough to endure an emotional blow.

But as destined, my hypothesis was strongly rejected by a sudden confession. It was a casual time after dinner, probably on a Friday, when we decided to stay up late. While I sat with my roommate discussing our romantic relations, she walked into the room. In the midst of our complaints, about our partners being away from us, she maintained an unusual silence.

A sudden sob interrupted our ‘important’ discussion. I came by her side in utter confusion, scared that we might have invaded her past memory. She wrapped her arms around my waist. A trembling voice came in between the sobs. “I am a divorcee”, she said. That single word made me fail all the words I had ever known.

Married at twenty-three, she was a victim of an abusive relationship and domestic violence. Yet, her wretched and miserable past hadn’t broken her spirit. She came back stronger than before with a new resolution to create her own identity. That evening her dominant attitude became one of the greatest inspirations in my life.


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