My mother used to always tell me that my father wanted a daughter and when I was born, he was on top of the world. I was an extremely pampered child as I was the youngest girl in my extended family. I was the apple of my parents’ eyes.
I had changed four schools till my 12th standard and unfortunately – never had any good experience in any of the schools. I constantly remember of how I was fat shamed and body shamed for being on the heavier side. Since, I had my elder brother in the same school; I was constantly compared to him in every aspect by my teachers. This made a huge dent in my self-confidence, self-esteem, and self-image. My teachers used to shame me by calling me forward and asking everyone to “boo” me if I wasn’t able to spell anything correctly. My intelligence wasn’t measured on what
I liked or who I was but it was always measured on how different I was in comparison to my brother.
I had no friends, the teachers hated me, my classmates looked down upon me, and no one would even like to share their lunch with me during the lunch break. I was also rebuked for being mischievous and that’s how I started to dissociate myself from this behavior of mine.
Those dark times of being misunderstood, lonely, judged, criticised, being made fun of, and made to feel like a dumb person shaped me into what I am today. I cannot bear to see anyone going through a rough patch. Whenever I sense something like this, I feel like I have to help them anyhow. My sensitivity and helping nature is a boon of those dark times when I had to fend for myself without anyone’s support.
The Flip Side at Home
The schools were difficult to manage but what was more difficult was my mother’s chronic disease. When I was in 8th standard, my mom was diagnosed with Kidney failure and she was first on medication and then on dialysis. This was a complete blow on my family – emotionally, financially, and generally. I was taking care of the house and studying for exams at the same time. I never shared with anyone what my mom was going through till I came in the 11th standard.
I become sulky and a quiet person at home. My bubbly and carefree nature went to dust with all these new adjustments. I remember that even during my board exams, I used to just study for 4-5 hours. I used to get home, make lunch, do other work, and prepare dinner and then study in whatever time I had. And, I had no tuition’s ever!!! Nonetheless, I scored distinction in both of my boards. Today, when I look back at those six years of hardship – I don’t know how I survived them but I did somehow.
There had been times when we had to rush mom into the emergency during midnight or early hours of the morning as the water content had exceeded or there was some other complication that had occurred. More than half of my schooling years went in spending time in hospitals. As a teenager, it was frightening for me to see my mother constantly being under medication and hospital care. Her health started to deteriorate even more with each passing day. She also suffered a heart attack in 2009, a year before she left us. These are extremely painful memories to even visit again. The only thing that kept me going was a hope that everything will be better and that someday; I will be living a life as I had dreamed about.
College Days = Finding “Nikita” Days
I found who I truly am in college. I have always been an intuitive person and since my childhood, I used to get dreams and those would be like my connection to the universe. I always had the ability to sense if something is wrong or something is going to happen. I had been fascinated with tarot cards ever since I was in 9th standard. But, because of certain circumstances at home, I never thought of pursuing anything remotely related to spirituality.
My college was my space. I was loved for who I was and my batch mates were the most amazing people on earth. They have all contributed to my personal development. Especially, my professors! They have been a pillar of strength in crisis and they have always been pushing me beyond my limits to recognize who I am. Even with my mischievousness, they accepted me and made me feel “loved and “belonged.” I started to know myself and what I liked and disliked and it was only in such an environment, that I blossomed. I took chances, I learned, I grew. I have always loved to write and my relationship with writing was strengthened during college.
It was towards the end of my S.Y B.A. in 2010, when I lost my mom. It was a difficult year but my friends and professors ensured that I don’t go nuts. They have truly been a blessing to me.
Meeting My Guru
In 2013, I started my quest to find a Guru who could teach me about spirituality and the art of Tarot Reading. It’s during that time; I met my first Guru, the late Mrs. Alka Dalal, who opened the doors of spirituality for me. I shared with her how my life had been and how since a young age, I have been sensing things around me. I shared my dreams with her that came up and she enlightened me by sharing that I am a spiritual person. I am blessed by a gift from the Universe and that if I learnt the tools, I would go ahead.
She taught me Reiki Level 1 & 2 and the art of Tarot Reading. Learning something that I wanted since a very long time, felt like magic and I very sincerely practiced them. Slowly, I started to extend my gift to my family and close friends to practice and see whether it would help them. The results were astonishing and accurate.
My journey led me to help and heal many people with my gifts. Whether it was for their relationships, finance, health, professional life, or any other issues, I was happy to see that I managed to help many people in finding their path and answers. However, I was working at that time as a content writer with a start –up. Things were going pretty well but then I started to lose interest in being a professional content writer. I felt that I am not cut out for a job that doesn’t let creativity flow in.
In 2015, at 25, I quit my job with nothing in my hand. I had no plans or any idea of what I would do next. I only had my blogs where I was writing and which attracted many people to approach me for freelance writing. But that wasn’t sufficient. I wanted to help people heal with my gifts. Wondering what to do next was a big question at that time. I took time to mull over it and reached to a conclusion of starting something of my own. It was then, my brand “Aakruti Tarot and Reiki Centre” came into existence.
I reached out to my large circle of friends that I built till then and asked them to help me in spreading the word for my center. Slowly, things started taking shape and I began seeing people. It wasn’t exactly full-fledged work but I was getting a chance to help people. I had some experiences where people had come to me feeling very low and confused.
For being able to help them better, I thought of doing a basic course in counselling. I tried to figure out good places where counselling courses were taught. In my search, I came to my current organization, “Maanas The Inside Story” where I am currently working as Psychotherapist and counsellor. It intrigued me and I decided to give it a shot.
After a series of discussion at home, I joined their two year Diploma program in Counselling and Psychotherapy. I had decided to do only one year but as the program went by, I felt connected to it and felt like, I am meant for it. It was towards the end of completing my one year in this course, I was asked whether I would like to join Maanas as a team member and I readily said Yes!
The rest is history! Well, no actually. It was quite a difficult decision because it meant that I had to appear for another post-graduation degree in Masters in Psychology. By the way, I had already completed my Master’s in English Literature before making a career shift. At age of 26, I took this decision of making a career shift when my co-classmates or friends were already well-settled and earning well. The stakes were huge but then, there isn’t any success without risks!
The profession of being a Psychotherapist is a selfless profession. I had to take my own journey with my therapist before I took on my clients. For, I needed to integrate within myself before I helped others start their journey. I am quite happy with how society is opening and getting aware about mental health. It surely gives me a ray of hope as mental and emotional health is as important as physical health.
My tryst with spirituality is ever growing and I just completed my Reiki Level 3 last year. I am still learning a lot in field of Tarot, Reiki, Energies and spirituality. This field is very deep and requires a lot of work on myself frequently. I have always believed that there is a higher power over me, who is guarding me. You may call it Divine, Universe, God, or through whatever name you want to give it, that force remains unshaken.
As there were lots of blockages in my life, but I never felt alone once I realized that I am an intuitive person. When my mom was ill or when there were struggles in my life; I have always found help and support in terms of friends or random strangers. This has sharpened my idea of belief and faith. I always think to myself that I am God’s child and so, nothing bad will ever happen to me. Yes, at time of my mom’s death, I was hurt, sad, and devastated but still, my higher power sent me help in various form to deal with it.
My Tarot readings have proved true for many because those people chose to work on the guidance that was provided to them. As a healer, I would say that I am here to help people find the path and to acknowledge the fear and uncertainty it may come with BUT – walking and overcoming that path filled with fears and uncertainty is your responsibility. I would be aiding you with what can be done but the action has to be taken by You. Because at the end, it is your life and only You have a right to write it the way you want to!
The only reason, I have been able to achieve all this because I CHOOSE to create the life, I wanted. I choose to believe in what I was doing even if there wasn’t always financial gain involved. I had my priorities set whenever I have worked on something and largely that priority has been to help people. This attitude comes from that younger Nikita who was alone without any help. That was the biggest life lesson for me.
Of course, I have my friends to thank to for shaping me into who I am. A large credit goes to my family as well, especially – my father for being my constant backbone at all times. I don’t know how difficult my journey would have been if I was born into some other family.
I have faced failures many times in life but each time, I vowed myself to get better. I am in no competition with what others do. I am focusing on how I can be a better version of myself each day and where my happiness lies. I also have a soul of a fighter so I don’t except quitting anything easily. I may cry and withdraw but I know till I am alive, I will always bounce back.
My words to people reading this would be to Believe in yourself and Choose your life. The minute, we give others the option of choosing a life for us or make decision for us – we no longer have any control on it.
Take control and conquer the world!