Why Give?

It’s the first day of the month in which I was born and is it going to be a dramatic one! One is soon (God willing and Mom willing), going to be heading on an adventure. The kind that makes my gut wrench. Why, you may ask, am I doing it then? Well, once a masochists always a recovering masochists! Or like Tom Hanks said, it’s the choice between faith and fear!


As I got all my affairs sorted out for a couple of months and got my finances in order, a friend suggested that I should put my adventure up as a ‘BitGiving Campaign’. You know my Dad taught us, ‘there are no free lunches, so don’t ask people for favours. It’s better to do someone a favour than to ask for one because they will hold it over your head.’ I have tried to follow that, as much as is possible. That’s the reason why even when I went to Nepal during the earthquake and to Kashmir during the floods, though friends kept offering to give me money, I refused to take it.


So, why now? Most people I know, have the ability to do and fund most things they are passionate about, so crowd funding is not something I would do normally. But you know I’m perpetually on some trip or the other. The study of social behaviour is one of my favourite pass times and this is a perfect little experiment, which I am totally enjoying. The handful of people who were sent the request to ‘help Saadiya celebrate her birthday on the road’, 75% out of those have had the sweetest reaction. There’s been an outpour of good wishes…some of my friends have already started contributing and I am so touched by the support. Especially,  because it’s not for ‘a cause’, the name of the campaign itself suggests, the people who are contributing are helping ‘me’ celebrate ‘my birthday’, doing what I like to do best.


As for the sceptics-Every year, we spend thousands of rupees, if not lakhs socialising with the people we know. Lunches, dinners, birthdays, anniversaries, marriages and what not! We spend an awful lot of time, energy and money trying to maintain those relationships. But I have always wondered why? All relations are based on- don’t say love, I will barf, they are based on convenience and on a barter system. That’s the reason why people feel let down at the lowest points of their lives, when they have nothing to give emotionally,  physically and materialisticly- no one feels any,  love for them at that time. Everything is a barter, you giving me presents on my birthday is something you feel compelled to do since, either I have done the same or because it’s just a social norm. But from 2017, I’m officially done with the pleasantries!


In a couple of years I am going to be forty, there’s a particular kind of life I want to lead and a particular kind of people I want to be associated with. I want be around wild untamed spirits, dreamers and rebels and most of all supporters. I’m done for this life time with the nay sayers. So, each year on my birthday I am going to ask people to help me fulfill a wish-it could be for me, for someone else, for the foundation that I will someday start in my brother’s name. From now onwards, I would rather hear, ‘good luck’ rather than ‘happy birthday’, ‘I support you’ rather than ‘I love you’. I no longer want bags, jewels, flowers (actually I love flowers, so one would be nice) and fluff. I just want people who say, ‘we got your back babe!’ It’s the start of a new era!


Since BitGiving keeps suggesting, I should write a blog about the campaign, sharing the link to -Help Saadiya Celebrate Her Birthday On The Road.