Aum Kezang

“Until Apa found an amchung, I stayed at Thimphu and studied till class 2. Then, Ama took me with her to Bumthang. Life was hard as we raised sheep and I had to collect firewood. Nonetheless, I was happy. Raising sheep was relatively easier; they would freely graze during the day and when the sun comes down, they return. And we made yathra and Galapan by shearing the wool. As a child, I learned to embroider. Then, I met my husband who was in the army. Together, we had three sons.
When his mother passed away, he took a voluntary resignation and we moved to his village. Making a living got difficult after that—we had to work on the farm to educate the children.

My husband didn’t drink or smoke, but he’d hit me a lot.
This went on for 15 years. The neighbours who saw consoled me and told me to tolerate it for my children’s sake.
I never thought about leaving him. Even if he killed me, it’d still be my past life’s ley.
But one day, he just left.
People still told me to go back to him but it was he who didn’t want me.
My oldest son started farm work and I decided to help him vendor the produce in Thimphu.
Whatever I made, I kept a little cash for the bus and gave the rest to them. I come from Paro Dawakha and go around Thimphu, selling vegetables.

I live here with my niece who calls and treats me like her mother—I don’t have to pay rent. The money I make helps me pay for my youngest son’s school. I plan to continue working with the hopes that if he gets to college, I can save enough to support him.
The money also helps me to go on pilgrimage and make offerings.
When I was still married, I hardly left home.”

Are you happy now that you are no longer in your marriage?
“Yes, I am. No one to hit you or stop you from going anywhere. Some people, when they see me selling vegetables, tell me that if I have no kids, then I should go to the Goemba and pray. Others appreciate my small business.”

#humanstory #humansofthimphu

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