Imagine being called by a wrong name for years. It would understandably make you feel annoyed and even agitated. Now, imagine how it would feel like to live a reality that felt inauthentic every single day of your life. To live in a superficial world just to adjust to the arbitrary norms of society and make peace with constant confusion and suffocation. It would be painful beyond words and that’s exactly what fashion designer Saisha Shinde, formerly known as Swapnil Shinde, had been feeling all this while.
But, no more! The ace designer has officially come out a transwoman and introduced herself to the world once again. So, say hello to Saisha Shinde!
Saisha recently shared a picture as well as a powerful message on her Instagram handle where she talked about her ordeal and journey to acceptance and freedom. She wrote, “Irrespective of your origin, there will always be something that reminds you of your childhood. For me, it takes me back to the kind of loneliness that aches, to pressures that pushed me into solitude, and the chaos of confusion that grew every moment.”
Saisha further added, “All through school and college, while the boys outside tormented me because I was different, the internal pain was far worse. I felt suffocated living a reality that I knew wasn’t mine, yet one that I had to stage every day because of societal expectations and norms. It was only in my early 20s at NIFT where I found the courage to accept my truth; I truly bloomed.”
She explained that it took her some time to understand her truth and for a while, she thought that she was gay. She ended the note saying, “I spent the next few years believing that I was attracted to men because I was gay, but it was only six years ago that I finally accepted to myself, and today that I accept to you. I’m not a gay man. I am a Transwoman.”
Several celebrities including Shruti Haasan, Diandra Soares, Aditi Rao Hydari and Sikander Kher lauded Saisha for her courage. Here’s what they wrote:
Saisha also shared a beautiful message on her Instagram story where she expressed her happiness on being referred to as “Ma’am” by her team. She wrote, “The sheer agony of hearing “sir” all those years! Never thought that this would be a reality! But here we are chasing our dreams! My team started saying good morning “ma’am” about a month ago with utmost pride.”
By coming out as a transwoman, Saisha has given hope and courage to many trans folks who are too afraid to be their authentic self in our judgemental society. A change in perspective in how our society looks at the trans community, which is mostly demeaning, has been long, long overdue. While things are definitely changing, we still have a long way to go. And Saisha has just become a part of a great revolution by sharing her story with the world.
More power to you Saisha!
Feature Image: Instagram