Real - Life Durgas: Shruti Agarwal (First Blog Post from the series)

Based out of Hyderabad, Shruti Agarwal is a strong modern woman who has mastered the art of maintaining balance in life, something most of us struggle with on a day to day basis. Everything she is today, is a product of her hard work and a great decision making ability. Starting from scratch, at the age of 25 she bought herself a house and there was no looking back. She believes in the importance of maintaining balance in every sphere of life. As a warm and strong-headed woman, she today stands as a pillar of strength, not only for herself, but also for three families!

What follows is a detailed interview with this Real-Life Durga, first from "A Blog Series on Life Stories Of The Everyday Sheroes”:

Name - Shruti Aggarwal

Profession - Assistant Manager at Genpact India

Q. How long have you been working?

Ans. - It has been 4.6 years now.

Q. Could you tell us about your favourite memory so far?

Ans. - There are two actually -

First - When I fulfilled my first dream - Bought myself a house.

This wasn’t easy and which is what made it so special. It took a lot of time and effort. I met builders, advocates, arranged the required docs, finalized dates, location, quotation, and then it was a new city with a language that I could barely understand. This was new for me. All this effort however, paid off. I I owned my house at the age of 25. I was happy.

Second - My dream Proposal

I was considered plump and wasn’t quite “sought-after” and as far as I remember or know, not a lot of people were fond of me. I had very few friends and I had somehow subconsciously presumed that I will never be able to love someone and be loved in a similar fashion. But then there he was. It was special. It was for me.

Q. The graph of life is never straight. Did you face any typical low in your life?

Ans. - Till date there have been a few major lows in my life:

Love for music - compromised

Since my family was very strict and there was a lot of pressure to focus on studies rather than “unproductive activities”, even though I was really good at classical music and had already completed third year in the same, I had to let it go. It was a major compromise.

The family - I missed them

Back in time, my sister was diagnosed with a brain tumor. As a child, especially a girl child, I had my own challenges. It was difficult - to accept that my best friend and sister was unwell, I was left alone and none could be blamed for it, I probably was growing in solitude and that I missed MY FAMILY.

When my pillar of strength was left not-so-strong

My world turned upside down when my father was diagnosed with cancer. Everything changed in that moment of realization.

Q. What is that one thing that you aspire the most?

Ans. - Balance in life. My career and job is in Hyderabad, my parents (who need their children the most right now) are in Delhi, my in-laws (who are growing old and lonely day by day) are in Bengal. They demand my involvement. It is not easy to have an equilibrium especially when you live in a different city.

Q. Who do you consider as your idol?

Ans. - My cousin actually. She heads a branch in BOM. She has been excelling at her work and has been taking care of her siblings, children and two families. Life as a working woman is challenging. It demands a lot!

Q. With so much on you plate right now, how do you manage everything?

Ans - It is no rocket science actually. Work has to go on, no matter what. At the same time I consider my parents and my husband’s parents together as a family. My in-laws have been really supportive and loving.

Q. Has your workplace been supportive?

Ans. - They have been. I believe that a good workplace helps you evolve. I have seen myself evolve, both professionally and personally. I have gradually learnt the art of “comprehending before reacting” and “to understand the perspectives of unlike minded people”.

Q. What are your future plans?

Ans. - I always have short-term goals and take life as it comes. That’s how I function.

Q. What is you advice to other women?

Ans. - What is going to happen will happen. What best you can do is to amend to an extent but not change. Take life as it comes and keep going. Life doesn’t stop for any minor or major set-back, and hence, you shouldn't stop.

Thank you so much Shruti for your cooperation and time!

This blog series "Real-Life Durgas" aims at bringing to light the life stories of "everyday" women who have demonstrated strength in their unique ways and there's so much to learn from them.

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