Till date, to me, Sanctuary meant a reserve park only and I have never been to one. So I initially thought, word sanctuary is more inclined towards stories and incidents in reserve park than emotions and thoughts.

When I google the meaning/definition of sanctuary, I was surprised to know it is much more than a reserve park. As per dictionary it is a place of refuge or safety. Synonyms being refuge, oasis, retreat, hideout, hideaway, shelter, protection, immunity, asylum. With deeper understanding of the word, I am here searching my memory box to relate with it.

Being a daughter to single mom, I was always taught to portray strength, mostly emotional than physical. When I was a kid, I was asked to go to market alone to buy small things like grocery items. That simple act helped me overcome my fears of strangers, built up my confidence, taught me to be always aware of your surroundings and be attentive  when new anywhere. But farther I moved away from the safe shelter of my mom, to hostel for higher studies and then for my job, more strongly I felt the need to be emotionally independent.

There were times when I had to cope up with eve-teasing, while travelling mainly…. People were always around me, my classmates, colleagues. But I could never seek comfort in them due to the fear of my weakness exploited by them. And neither could I call up my mom as she will be worried sick sitting so far off. I had to take matter in my own hands and fight for my own. Many a times, I was able to stand up and act and some times there wasn’t enough time for me to overcome my hesitation-think-and act. Those were the times I wanted to sneak into my Sanctuary, my hideaway. And this hideaway used to be my room. I always made sure to get single occupancy room all for myself, be it during college or job. That was my personal corner of solace where no can see me weak. There I will watch a lot of animated movies (Tinker Bell tops the list). I would eat my favorite chocolate and will play party songs at full volume “on my earphones”. I would then order my favorite pizza and will talk to my sister not about me but about her life problems and will vent out my anger along with her :P. With my tummy full and aggression out, I will then brainstorm  myself to get to the reason why it happened, what I should have done and what will I do. Almost every time after all this, I ends up exhausting myself to the point to stop thinking and drift to sleep.:)

Next day is New day and New me. With my best dress on and my favorite breakfast down, I am all ready to grab the bull by horns…a definitive solution to all my problems. Will it be good or bad let time decide that. And in my case.. I have been lucky. 😉

Sanjna Rai.


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