Her Identity

Jaibala/ November 3, 2015/ Short Stories/ 31 comments

As the first orange flames engulfed her, Dhiti wondered whether she should try to fight, whether fighting would be worth it. She realised at that moment that she had accumulated only regrets in her life, so she decided to shed all her gathered baggage now. She had given up her dreams for their happiness, always choosing them over her. She had squandered a lot in life, her independence, her individuality and now finally her mind – that is what they said, that she had lost her mind. For her things had never been clearer, through the flames she could see clearly for the first time in her life what people were and who she was.


Maybe if she had stood her ground when she was asked to give up everything including her identity, then she would not have been subjected to humiliation for having nowhere else to go now. She had never shared her hopes, she thought “what no one knew could not hurt them,” maybe saying things aloud could have saved her from bring adrift on unknown seas, but the flames surrounding her were helping her remember the slow destruction of Dhiti. Her life flashed before her like a movie shot on a 70mm camera meant for the big screen.


She had always been the obedient daughter, never going against the will of her parents however much she thought otherwise. That is when she first learnt to kill her dreams and deny her wishes. Saddled with a horde of duties, she learnt that personal hopes and aspirations always come last. She had been the responsible elder sister, always ensuring that younger siblings never got in trouble, and fighting their fights when needed, just as all elder sisters ought to. Her first tryst with responsibility was a success, and paved the way for her gaining more baggage and lesser space for aspirations.


Then one day Dhiti suddenly found herself to be a dutiful wife,, raised to be so by responsibility and taught by obedience. She had been as good a wife as she could be. Dhiti had been very clever in not letting anyone know the truth; she had hidden the negative and showed the world that it was all so good. She did not know her guile would come back to haunt her later, Dhiti emerging as the villain for masking the true demon in her life.


Dhiti emerging as the villain for masking the true demon in her life. Click To Tweet


Finally she was a mother, everyone put her on a pedestal and she had to follow the strictest possible code of conduct to stay up there. No one cared if she wanted to be there, or that was what she wanted to follow in life. That did not worry Dhiti. All her life she had been training and sacrificing for this moment of salvation and pure glory. She was doing the perfect job of that too, but somewhere while being that mute, dumb, atoning person she realised the difference between living and existing. That is what made her realise that she wasn’t what she truly wanted to be.



She started to yearn for things that she never had, respect and love, the things she deserved. She thought they would be easy to get after having given so much of her to others. Dhiti never realised that her aspiration to be herself would be deemed as being selfish. She never believed the people who were saying she had lost her way, and needed to be reminded of the right path. Luckily she had realised that the only person in her life who did not need to change her course was her. She wished the rest of them would believe her though, but she never got them to.



She craved to be so much more in life, but she realised needed to go through the furnace to be true, just like gold has to face fire, and all its impurities are physically removed. She would be like the phoenix that rises from the ashes stronger than ever. She realised that the spark lit by the demon would actually be her salvation, she could not change what happened, but she can resurrect and be who she wanted to be. As the flames around her kept rising, she realised that she would soon be rid of everything that plagued her, and she smiled.


Read More at http://jaibalarao.comspicysaturday

About Jaibala

Academically a Microbiologist, I am a Web Columnist for popular magazines and websites, Freelance Writer and a Blogger. Words define me and writing and reading compete to be the love of my life. My biggest belief is that there is something good in everything and I always looks to highlight the best in things. Creative writing is my forte.You can reach me by dropping a mail at contact@jaibalarao.com


  1. Thank God for the end ! Loved it 🙂

    1. This end wrote itself actually. I had something else planned. It makes me so happy that you read this and more so that you loved it Richa. Thank You

  2. Congratulations! Your blog post was selected in Spicy Saturday Picks edition on November 7, 2015 at BlogAdda. Cheers 🙂

    Please find it here: http://blog.blogadda.com/2015/11/07/spicy-saturday-picks-7-november-2015

    1. Thanks Team BlogAdda 🙂

  3. Some of us are always saddled with the burden of responsibilities and obligations, at the cost of our own joys and aspirations. I feel Dhriti’s pain.

    The flame? Metaphorical?
    Who is this demon?

    1. I think most of us are wired that way, to be responsible for others and forget ourselves. Yes the flame is metaphorical and the Demon is her unhappiness, but then again the demon could mean different things to different people.

  4. “She started to yearn for things that she never had, respect and love, the things she deserved. She thought they would be easy to get after having given so much of her to others. Dhiti never realised that her aspiration to be herself would be deemed as being selfish.”
    This is just amazing. The flow of the post, every idea so brilliantly explained.
    There are so many articles already written on this topic, yet, this one strikes me as the best I’ve read till date.
    Mithila Menezes @Fabulus1710 recently posted…And Blog-A-Rhythm Turns One!My Profile

    1. I am so overwhelmed at this comment Mithila. Thank You so much <3 Some pieces just write themselves. This was one such.

  5. very insightful read, the society makes it so complicated for a woman,its nice to remove some blinkers and lenses.
    Pooja Sharma Rao recently posted…NAVRATRI SNAPSHOTS 2015My Profile

    1. Thank You Pooja. It is always hard to break and challenge the status quo. A change of perspective is a breath of fresh air.

  6. I am glad that she feels herself for phoenix and gold..! And women.. sometimes us and so many times around us, we see them giving unconditionally to their families.. without expecting a single thing in return.. and in the midst of it, some of them lose their identities as well.. I just hope they learn this soon.. or may be people around them learn this soon..

    Beautifully written Jaibala!

    Geets recently posted…What’s in Name? Let’s find out!My Profile

    1. I have come to understand that people wont realise it for us. It is the person who has to ‘wake up and see the sun’ so to speak. People are wired to take advantage.Thank You so much Geetika 🙂

  7. This was one powerful bit of writing and very inspiring too for all sisters and mothers who lose themselves in people around them. I know a little bit about ‘being put on a pedestal’ once you’re a mom. Sometimes you do that to yourself. You’re so conscious of the example you’re setting that you struggle to be someone else. But that never does work in the long run. Loving yourself the way you are – that’s a great thought.
    Beat About the Book recently posted…The two QuasimodosMy Profile

    1. Yes Tulika, I guess I have seen a lot of the self sacrificing aspect of being a woman, and how much it was expected that I do it at various points of my life. Initially I just thought I had no choice, and eventually realised, if I want a choice I need to make it for myself. Thank You so much <3

  8. That was excellent storytelling. I loved how it ended and how she took it in her hands to honor her happiness.
    Rachna recently posted…Gift your loved ones happiness this DiwaliMy Profile

    1. Thank You Rachna. I guess eventually everyone needs to do that, realise that our happiness is in our hand only.

  9. That was powerful Jai.. made me shiver a little at the intensity of Dhiti’s feelings..
    It’s not selfish to take care of ourselves.. It’s necessary for our well being.
    Beautifully written.

    1. True, we have to put ourselves first for our sanity. Thank you Pix <3

  10. Beautiful! And that’s a stage that should come and if it doesn’t – something is not right. So many women around us do everything for others but what about their aspirations and desires. So well written!
    Parul recently posted…Hong Kong – Man Mo TempleMy Profile

    1. Thank You Parul <3 Its just sad that women don't realise their own worth. The more people learn to love and accept themselves. The happier everyone will be.

  11. Such an inspiring story, Jaibala. The moment we realize that living for the self is not selfish, is the moment we start to live happily. 🙂
    Vinitha recently posted…Abuse #NaBloPoMo15 #NaBloPoMoMy Profile

    1. Truly said Vinitha 🙂 happiness and living both depend on how we treat ourself

  12. Awesome and inspiring. Sometimes we have to be a little selfish to see what we truly are and what we really want.
    Nibha recently posted…Second Coming – Book ReviewMy Profile

    1. I like to call it Self Love rather than Selfish. the moment we realise we are important too, its all sorted.

  13. Like a phoenix, may she rise from the ashes of her past.
    Sid recently posted…Would you like a drink?My Profile

    1. Yes, everyone needs to let go of their past and rise above it.

  14. Very strong story! But, I want the heroine to not just give up.. I want her to come back to life to give hope to many like her.

    1. oh.. looks like I missed a few lines.. I love the ending.

      1. Thats okay Thank You Lata. It is the one who fights and rises again who actually inspires others.

  15. At first, I was sad wondering why she had to set herself aflame, but then I realized you were talking symbolic, as in Dhiti realizing she had to be reborn, to be who she wanted to be rather than who she was trained to be. Interesting tale!

    1. Yes that is what most women I see need to realise. Break free from what they are trained and taught and think for themselves.

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