Even being a girl child my upbringing was very independent. Born with a silver spoon and apple of eye of my father.
When an undergraduate student I started working for own pocket money. Because I felt shy to take it from parents when I crossed 18. From cabin crew training to an aspiring Rj to a fashion designer, I wanted to do everything. I left my career in the beginning stage because of some other commitments but I tried.

But they say when you read a book you turn one page, and when you travel you write a book.

I am a proud registered organ donor (all organs). Have been married for 12 years almost and respect my family bonds and believe in my roots. I am a Krishna devotee and have faith in God and in my prayers and karma.

I always wanted to do something different in work so that I can look after my family as well. I became self employed
from housewife after a month of my marriage. That was pretty good experience being an entrepreneur of sorts. From that it was learning, then it was education and more – I was always experimenting.

The Solo traveller India

But they say when you read a book you turn one page, and when you travel you write a book.

I have always been fond of traveling. After my marriage I never got chance to go out to holiday without family. Even though because of work I traveled many places but never for any holiday. One evening of 2016 after my CFA exams were done, I asked my husband to take me for a holiday. He said you go alone. That was god sent. I was like “Am I dreaming? What did he just say?”

My first solo (soulful) vacation trip was to Goa. And that too in extreme monsoons. It was incredibly beautiful and that was the turning point of my life. For me the experience of interacting with culture & roots of Goa was a revelation.

From there the idea of Pinksuitcase was born. The women only trip. For women by a woman! It’s been more than two years of this traveling group, which has evolved through me and has changed me. While this journey continues, there was a speed bump in the middle.

I realised at every stage of my life, I had to reinvent.

In 2016, I had depression. Life was otherwise great. I had two loving toddlers and an amazing life but something was not right. I was looking for me. For what was alive for! Going to psychologists, or healers or even the medication didn’t help me. My inspiration from the travelling days forced me to look for a circle of support. As part of this I created SAFAR, an awareness programme. The focus is to work with others on issues of depression/ anxiety, self defence, nutrition (note there is a big difference between being fit and being slim), free sessions of yoga etc.

I realised at every stage of my life, I had to reinvent. Sometimes by travelling to get out and at others to stay connected with my roots. I returned to Indore to start a city chapter for Saree speak. I encourage the members of this group to focus on promoting handloom and small weavers who can get more recognition and can earn more for their daily needs.
To raise more awareness, I am now practicing for 10 km for Indore in handloom saree.
Arpita Joshi
Views are the writer’s own
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