Friday, November 13, 2015

The journey thus far - Dhrubo speaks

Dhrubo Jyoti

"Dhrubo is a 26-year-old journalist who can't be beaten at the Oppression Olympics. Genderqueer, lower caste and uprooted, he wants to question you but also cuddle you. One part Bengali, two parts glutton and one part procrastinator, the only thing that bores him is his past astrophysics life. Make me more cultured and classy, he says, but doesn't believe in class."

Dhruv was among the 20 fellows selected for the Pratiti journey in Delhi.
Read what he has to say about his experiences so far:

"The beginning of a journey is often the toughest. At Pratiti, too, it wasn’t easy – adjusting, settling with others, into a family of strangers, learning to talk and trust and eat and sleep next to people who knew about you. But over the last two months, the wonderful people I have met have not only validated my faith in people but enriched my life in a variety of small but significant ways – conversations with those facing challenges very different from mine and the courage with which they fought against their demons. 

I learnt that it was alright to feel vulnerable and let one’s emotions forth, that if you trusted other people with your fears, they will trust you too – and thus the magical gateway into another person’s life, their dreams and aspirations and insecurities. 

None of it was easy. I fought and questioned, possibly disrupting others’ thoughts and actions – the rules seemed oppressive, the construct of a family, often the site of wanton violence and suppression, rang false, and the exhortations of sharing appeared manipulative. 

But just as first impressions peel away, the resentment gave way to wonderment, at the extraordinary collection of people around me, fighting both their personal and social oppressors with grace and courage. We discussed and talked about issues and people, debated problems, hugged and cried, held each-other through traumas. I learnt that journeys needn’t have the destination you had been told – that it could still be enriching if you reached a different destination, or didn’t reach at all. 

We spend so much of our lives in cocoons, ensconced among people and circumstances we are familiar and at peace with. Pratiti took me out of that and into rugged unfamiliarity, and my fellow travellers taught me how to walk and jump and run and be happy. In the vivid diversity and magic of my fellow travellers lay the essence of my experience. This is one family I wouldn’t mind coming back to."

Follow the Pratiti blog for more beautiful updates from the fellows as they narrate their journeys of growth and transformation into gender leaders...

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