Every (dark-skinned) Indian woman’s story

When this picture of Femina’s Miss India 2019 uniformly beautiful contestants, with their light skin tone and straight hair faced public outrage, I cheered. Like most of my peers, I came of age in India in the era of Fair and Lovely, facing the biases of a patriarchal society that puts a premium on the complexion of a girl. In this hard-hitting article in Medium.com, Neha Dixit, takes us through her own story as she tries to explain this national obsession. Hats off, Neha. More power to you.


Yoga Ready

It seems like it was just yesterday that my chubby toddler walked under the inverted V formed by my body as I practiced down-dog. She plonked herself on my back, diaper and all, as I tried to maintain the curve in cobra. I couldn’t help but stop and smile at her cute antics.

Yoga came into my life right after she did. I was still learning the ropes at my first job when she was born. I returned to work six weeks later, trying to do my best on the work and home fronts. Six months later, I was an exhausted wreck dozing off at my desk, a fact that my observant boss noticed.

 He handed me a flyer for a lunchtime yoga class at our office. I took the hint. My initiation to yoga began as the most conveniently located exercise option. I did not know then that it would help my body recover its pre-pregnancy shape, improve my energy levels and serve as an anchor during turbulent times.

 Two decades later, my daughter looks nothing like her gap-toothed chubby-cheeked toddler-self; she is a certified yoga teacher.

When I attended her class as a paying student at our neighborhood yoga studio, I felt a wave of nostalgic engulf me. The next moment I felt a gentle stretch, as she helped me get deeper into a forward fold.

She wasn’t always as flexible as she is now but perhaps she has always been yoga ready.   

As the world prepares for International Yoga Day on 21 June 2019, tell us about your practice.