As I entered the final month of teaching with the first Fearless Beauty class, I found myself reflecting questions and intentions that I’ve had along the way: Who will the girls be? Will they be receptive to the teachings? Will they be open to me? How will we connect? As one of my dearest friends said to me many years ago, Connection is the Cure. All human beings desire and thrive on connection…
The girls speak very little English, and I speak almost no Hindi. Rather than allowing language to be an obstacle, I used it as a way to connect, peel away the masks, melt the barriers, and earn their acceptance and trust. During our first day of class I used a few Hindi phrases that I diligently practiced leading up to that morning, and it worked! I immediately found myself in a circle with the girls giggling. It was on that day as well that I showed the girls I was not afraid of doing something imperfectly, that in our space it’s ok to laugh, and that they had things to teach me too.
Throughout the next few posts, we will introduce you to these Fearless Women, so that you too can make that deeper connection and learn more about the work and lives that you are helping to transform through your support.
Although I was told that the girls didn’t speak English, one very brave girl, Deepa, stood up and smiled shyly as she did her very best to introduce herself to us in English. During that first week and throughout our first month together, I learned that Deepa does understand and speak English, and I often turned to her for help with translation. Within a few days, Deepa was given the name “Drama Queen” by one of the other girls and as time went on, we all learned just how fitting the name is. She is never on time, and her entrance to class is something of a production: we regularly get a kick out of Deepa as she runs into class 20 minutes late, out of breath and panting, causing a big scene with all wondrous excuses. All drama aside, she is a great student. She shows up everyday, works hard, takes direction and correction with grace, and she is dedicated to grasping the techniques.
We’re delighted to introduce you to these Fearless Women. Stay tuned for more from Rishikesh.