Shilpa Bhagat: A woman’s limitless glory
Shilpa Bhagat shares her journey to claim the title of Mrs. India World.
Part – 1
“Growing up in an orthodox Marwadi joint family my childhood was very conditioned, but Maa always ensured that I grew up beyond those barriers. Coming from a family where girls were expected to run the kitchen, Maa wanted me to focus on my academics and grow up to become an entrepreneur one day.
I was 10 when we attended a wedding and a relative of mine showed up with a rishta for me; Maa was taken aback by this news and she ensured that I never attended any wedding after that. When I confronted her about it she told ‘ Agar koi acha Rishta aa Gaya to main tumhari Shaadi Nahi rok paaungi ‘.
Maa was a docile person but when it came to my education and future she never feared going against the odds in our family. Having her as my constant support I tried my best to make her proud. I was in 11th standard when I started teaching students part-time; Having a financial crisis while I go on to pursue my MBA wasn’t something I could afford so I started gathering my fees very early on.
The time came and I became the first girl in our family to move out of Kolkata for higher studies. While I finally felt liberated, I knew that now it was my time to support Maa; I went on to finish my MBA and fulfill her dream, and finally, I could afford to buy a house for my parents.
Having worked so hard her entire life Maa refused the house saying ‘ Beti ko to Dena chahiye, use Kaise le sakte hai? ‘ and for the first time in my life, I was against her and asked ‘ Maa did you not have the same pain while delivering me as you did for bhaiya ? ‘ to which she had no answer; When the pain in bringing up me or my brother wasn’t any different then why should our responsibilities after growing up be? “
Part – 2
“Having my mother as my hero throughout childhood, going to college all alone in Pune wasn’t easy but little did I know that there was going to be a new hero in the next part of my life. I met Karan during my CAT prep in Kolkata when he came to deliver a speech at our institute. It was love at first sight! Not only was he my first boyfriend but a constant through all the firsts that I never imagined.
Even after our marriage, he always made sure that I never shied away from my responsibilities towards my parents. Whether it be giving up my job at the bank or going to Singapore for my course or opening my own daycare center, he made sure to stand by me through it all. Things took a turn, when I bumped into an old friend Richa.
She was extremely beamish looking at my fitness and advised me to participate in the Mrs. World pageant. Having been a studious kid my entire life I never thought the beauty world was meant for me. Being a geek I was reluctant to enter the competition, but it was Karan who pushed me through it saying ‘you may not win the pageant but it will be a learning experience’.
And to my amazement, I ended up winning the title of Mrs. India World. What I started off as a learning adventure went on to become the best experience of my life. Having my mother and Karan as my constant anchors I never thought I could have a 3rd idol. But the moment I got crowned for being my true self, I did feel like a hero of my own! “