Hard, but so rewarding -- that's what Shahid Kapoor's mother, actor Neelima Azeem, has to say about raising her children by herself. In a recent interview with an entertainment portal, Neelima opened up about her life after divorce and the unbelievable amount of strength and courage single parenthood takes.
Speaking about the aftermath of her divorce, Neelima revealed that it was difficult for her to be there for her children all the time while balancing her career. "I had my own journey, my journey was all about picking myself up. I had my family and friend's support. But most of all I had Shahid. He gave me an insurmountable belief in life and enthusiasm to live. There were times when it was very difficult. I was the only earning member in the family so I had to work a lot. I never sat down to give myself a talk, I had an automatic gear inside me that would just shift into whatever the pace of life needed me to be," said Neelima.
Neelima and Pankaj got divorced in 1984, and Shahid stayed with his mother, but Pankaj also had custody of his son. Neelima also revealed that she didn't want to separate at the time but Pankaj chose to move on. "I would like to say that I didn’t decide to separate. It’s a fact. He moved on and it was a difficult thing for me to stomach but he also had his reasons. We had been friends from a long time. I think I was 15 years old when I became friends with him. He had very good reasons and I understood it,” she added.
Speaking about the bond between the brothers, Shahid and Ishaan, Neelima said, "It was adorable how Ishaan was always sitting in Shahid's lap when he was reading a newspaper or watching TV. Shahid has been an inspiration to Ishaan. Ishaan loves me because I am his mother, but he also loves Shahid equally. Both my children have adjusted a lot because we've not had a conventional life."
Neelima also shares a great bond with her daughter-in-law Mira Kapoor. "Mira is the daughter I never had. She makes me complete. Mira was so young when she got married to Shahid. She was in college and then she took on the mantle of becoming a wife to such a successful actor. Apart from becoming who she had to be in the industry, she has given so much happiness to my son. The first time I met Mira I just thought, 'yeh to sweet si hai, yeh to bachchi hai' and that we've someone who makes our family complete."
Aww, that's so sweet, Neelima! Sending virtual hugs to all of you!