Pragati Verma

Pragati Verma
Co-Founder, Prone

From the very start of my life all I wanted was to be strong; unbreakable, always standing tall. I still believe I am a strong woman but the definition of strength has evolved completely for me since then and it was this journey that led me to discover Prone.

As a child, I believed boys are strong. I related strength to masculinity. And so I tried to be one. From cutting my hair short to staying away from the dolls, to calling other girls stupid, I did it all. For that made me feel strong – to be the girl who wasn’t girly.

As I started growing up, I realized, this is not the right definition. Gender can never determine what strength is. I started owning up to my femininity. I started wearing heels, putting on nail paints, doing things that I always told myself I am not supposed to do.  But then what is strength?

‘A person who does not cry is strong. A person who is always smiling and fixes everything around them is strong. The one on whom everyone can rely.’ I was fixated on that thought for a while. It became the sole aim of my life, to keep the people around me happy, to never talk of pain, to never complain.

When a person suppresses their emotions for too long, they lose the realm of it. Then came the long awaited phase, the period of continuous breakdowns. Every day I found a new reason to cry, I lost control over my anger, on my tears, my joy. I felt weak but I was not supposed to ask for help.

But this time, Instead of trying to stop myself, I allowed myself to cry, to crib, to shout. I let myself feel free. I let all the burden release and then after I was done, I realized how content I was. And with this, I found a new definition of strength: vulnerability.

When I chose to admit I was weak, I felt stronger than ever because it takes a lot of strength to admit you aren’t perfect, that you have some guilty desires, or that you are scared of going out in the world, Scared of heart breaks, failures, death!

It is easy to say that we are all dead inside but are we? I don’t think so. It is just that from the very start we are told it is not ok to express how you feel, to expose yourself to the world and now we are just too tired of keeping quiet, of suppressing our emotions.

If we always stay behind those walls, how will we ever know what the ocean looks like? If we always stop ourselves from trusting, from falling in love, how will we ever know what forever feels like?

We are all prone. For being prone, is being alive.

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