The (Unexaggerated) Struggles of an Indian Girl

Hey there!

Hope you guys are having an amazing start to the week! I’m feeling rather chipper despite my lack of sleep, my scattered mind (let’s not talk about how many assignments I almost didn’t have completed today), and my body aches from sleeping with too many pillows.

So I thought I’d do a little something fun for you guys today. If you follow my personal blog, you may remember me sharing a tid bit of my life in a post titled, The (Unexaggerated) Struggles of an Indian Girl  (I’ve linked to it here in case you missed out). But, let me tell ya. As an Indian girl, the struggles are too real and endless. So, I’ve decided to create a Part II, to allow you guys to better understand A and I and the struggle bus that we often ride as being Indian girls.

So, here we go.

1. The creepy Facebook messages

As an Indian girl, you have to expect and know how to deal with strangely worded and “flirtatious” Facebook messages from Indian men. My personal favorites have included, “Hi, I like your friendship” and another one where Rajanth told me I’m beautiful enough to be a Bollywood actress. Well, thanks Rajanth, how did you know that was my life long dream (but really though).

2. Raisins

Okay, I don’t like raisins. Like what are these weird, tiny, shriveled up things? And for some reason, Indian people love to put raisins in everything. I don’t want raisins in my halwa and kheer (Indian desserts that you should definitely try if you haven’t), it ruins it! And most of all…I don’t want raisins in my rice! What ever possessed someone to try to put raisins in rice…I don’t know. But raisins are only edible when they are coated in chocolate.

3. The many cultures and languages of India

One would think that being a part of a country means a sense of unity and community among states. Well, not in India. In fact, we all make fun of people from other states. Don’t even get me started of the Punjabi and Gujarati feud. And the languages. According to The Hindustan Times (yes, I researched for you), there are 780 different languages spoken in India. Seven hundred and eighty. Like…why? This takes away some of the fun of being from a foreign country because half the time when my friends and I are trying to talk about the girl getting down in the club, we can’t even communicate. I say something in Hindi, I get a response in Gujrati. Like…girl…what. Are. You. Saying.

4. The stare down

If you’re Indian, you know all too well that every single brown person you see will stare you down. This isn’t even a friendly, oh, we’re all brothers and sisters stare. This is a do I know you stare. And if the answer is no, then it becomes a who the eff are you and why don’t I know you? stare. Because Indians just assume that they know every other Indian and if they don’t then something is wrong with you (the person they don’t know). Or…hmm…maybe guys, you just don’t know them because there are over 2 million of us in this country. Stop staring at me.

5. All up in your love life

My god, where do I even begin? As an Indian, your love life is everyone’s business. Your friends, everyone at your school, everyone that anyone at your school knows, and, of course, your family. I think people know the updates on my love life before I even do. My absolute favorite instance of this is my Dadi (who I love very much but our conversations always make the best stories). Every time I see my dadi, she “whispers” to me, “Acha, koi boyfriend hai?” (translation: “So, is there any boyfriend?”) Whisper is in quotation marks because she does not whisper. So unless I want the entire party to know about my love life…no Dadi, koi boyfriend nahi hai (translation: no Dadi, there is no boyfriend). I then see a little flicker of panic in her eyes, but then she kindly reassures me that it’s okay to focus on my studies. She then proceeds to hold me hostage and ask me questions about my cousin’s love lives. Whoops, sorry S & M.

Speaking of Dadis, let me share another great story with you. Dadi’s oldest sister (who is the cutest old lady ever) didn’t even bother asking me “koi boyfriend hai”, when I was in India this past December. Instead, during our family photo shoot, she sneakily tried to get everyone to take solo photos of just me to send to the handsome Punjabi man from Amritsar who is now a doctor in London. Wait. Let me fix my hair and reapply my eyeliner because…YES! Please send the good-looking doctor in London my photographs. S Daddy was NOT pleased and did not let this happen. But hey, I’m open to all possibilities.

6. Indian clothes for women

Okay, last time I focused my frustrations on just saris (the 9 yards of fabric we, as Indian women, are supposed to be born knowing how to tie around ourselves). But really, the picture is much bigger than this. With A’s wedding right around the corner, I’m starting to panic about the tiny blouses I’ll be having to wear. Honestly WHO can look good in those aside from actresses who make a CAREER out of looking good. I simply cannot axe wine, Chipotle, or Firecakes out of my diet. I’ve tried and I’ve failed. But I’m expected to look like this….

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Annnnd…cue the stress eating.

To my Indian ladies, props for staying sane through all of this.

Lots of love,

K

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Honesty Hour

Welcome to our second official Honesty Hour on Jointly! We’ve promised to always bring you the cold, hard truth, so brace yourself. We’re about to open up our hearts, minds, and yes, mouths, to you.

Question: What is something that has been bothering you lately?

K

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To be totally honest (cue Honest by Future), something pretty big has been bothering me since the start of the new year. It’s funny I’m actually hesitant to come out and say this because I’m not one for expressing my truest, inner feelings with the entire internet world. But, here goes nothing. Since 2014 began I’ve felt repeated pangs of disappoint in people around me. In fact, I think at some point every single person I’m close to has found a way to let me down in 2014. I think the number one thing that makes me lose a little faith in people is their readiness to commit to something, to make promises, and then to back out without even an ounce of guilt. I don’t think people realize that when they commit to something they put themselves in a position where you are relying on them.  Why anyone would not mind letting others down, I’m not quite sure.

Our dad always taught us to follow through on commitments. It doesn’t matter how much you don’t want to go to that family party, or how much you don’t want to talk to your distant relative on the phone, you suck it up and you do it, and do it with a goddamn smile. These are basic manners that have been handed down generation by generation since God knows when and honestly I’m not sure how they got lost in Generation Y.

Suck it up and do it with a goddamn smile, Generation Y.

A

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One of the biggest realizations of my (young) adult life has been people’s sad proclivities to put themselves last. It’s funny to write this in conjunction with my sister’s post because when I was her age… in fact, maybe up until I was like 24… I felt much the same way as her. I felt like people should do things for each other. And I will always think that way (for the most part). I will always go to places I don’t want to go, and try my best to pick up the phone when I don’t want to talk, but sometimes I really really really just need to do things for me.

After umpteenth nights of staying at work late because someone wanted to talk after their 15 meetings, or skipping my workout to to talk to a friend on the phone, or smiling and bearing it as all of my hopes and dreams of reading a book on my bed went into the shitter because I had to go get last minute drinks with my client, my perspective has changed.

What’s been bothering me lately is that some people put themselves last, even in a world where others put themselves first. If you want to come in at 11am because you want to hit up your favorite yoga class in the morning, then why can’t I leave at 7pm to spend time with my fiancé or HELLO – PLAN MY UPCOMING WEDDING.

I understand the importance of hard-work, and putting time in to earn stars and stripes – in work, friendships, and life in general. But I’m over always forgoing my own wants and needs. At the end of the day, if you’re not happy, healthy, and… well… sane… everything in your life will suffer. So I say, tell your friends you can’t (unless it’s something important like a birthday, or if you already promised – then don’t be a flake! No one likes flakes!), leave your phone in the other room, and CHILL. You deserve it. I’m sure.
Also I am happy to recommend content on Netflix, Hulu, or HBO Go for your viewing pleasure.
Jointly yours,
A & K