Last week I had the privilege of interviewing a number of widows living in Vrindavan. Much of what I read in articles focused on their struggles but no attention was given to what they were doing to overcome them. This inspired me to develop a research project aimed at uncovering what they did (coping mechanisms) to overcome struggles throughout their lives.
The number of interviews totaled 6 and each ranged from 45 minutes to an hour. The age of the women also ranged from 55 to 96 years of age. With the help of a translator, my dost (friend) Anita, each woman was asked to speak on struggles and coping mechanisms employed during her childhood, adolescence, marriage, and widowhood. Rightfully, they were reticent to share their stories, but I was not discouraged. Instead, their silence pushed me to listen with more than my ears.
Sachi (Truly), a simple blog post could not do justice to their stories; so instead, permit me to share a personal reflection. If would like a copy of the finished report, I will kindly share it with you. The following was taken directly from my journal and has not and will not be edited.
Notice the nuances, las moscas (the flies), the despair.
The eagerness to be heard masked by silence.
She forced me to abandon the plan.
I tried to have my way, but she stood firm.
"Be flexible" she said.
Your fight has not place here.
Listen to the silence.