Manasi’s story is not about losing a limb because of a road accident or winning a medal in a world championship thereafter. And what it definitely is not is a sob story, assigning a blame to anyone. It is about a simple girl who is living life on her own terms, her prosthetic leg notwithstanding.
Accepting, as is
Most of us can only aspire to be called ‘extraordinary’, and if we are, it’s pretty much a lifetime achievement. But Manasi thinks otherwise. “I’m just a regular girl, living a simple life. It’s the people around me who are extraordinary and go the extra mile to help me achieve what I wanted to,” she states with, what we have come to understand, her characteristic candour. And that’s what sets this lovely woman apart. It’s not the fact that her left leg was amputated after it was crushed by a truck in a horrific road accident in December 2011 and endured a long road to recovery thereafter.
Reams have been written on this lovely 26-year-old with a sunshine smile after the ‘Humans for Bombay’ page on Facebook posted her story. The story went viral instantly. While Manasi felt good that people wanted to know her story, and that it had the power to change someone’s life for the better, she’s still learning to handle the attention from strangers who want to take selfies with her. “Please don’t idolize me because then I’ll have to be more responsible,” says Manasi. “I want to make
A new leaf
Manasi sees herself as a truly ordinary person, struggling with things like managing a job, taking leave from work for tournaments, practising the game, finding time for herself, her family and friends. That’s why; her blog is titled ‘Ordinary ME’. “Frankly, there is so much of ‘Inspiration Porn’ associated with people with disabilities, I started my blog because I wanted to emphasise that I’m just like any other woman who has met with a trauma and is trying hard to keep her life
Apart from her badminton tournaments, which she has to travel for, Manasi has now vowed to take at least three trips every year. Last year saw her visit a dozen places—for sports and leisure. “I met many new people and it has given me an altogether new perspective about things, people and life. I try to convert every long weekend into a leisure trip,” says the intrepid traveller.
Through all the joys she is now discovering, Manasi believes that the road accident was nobody’s fault. And the thought helps her find peace. “I dealt with it by accepting that now nothing can be done and the only way is to move forward,” she says. “It’s very easy to be a victim of circumstance, but I choose to look at myself as a survivor. I think we’re limited by our own minds, and everything is possible when we become self-aware. That’s what helped me move on.
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