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Friday, July 10, 2020

Shama Sikander: During the lockdown, I have been able to connect with myself deeper

Actor Shama Sikander on the lockdown, her fiancé James Milliron, domestic violence, Bigg Boss and much more.

Written by A. Kameshwari | New Delhi | Updated: May 26, 2020 10:29:57 am
shama sikander on marriage, lockdown Shama Sikander is glad that coronavirus has taught people the importance of hygiene and social distancing. (Photo: Shama Sikander/Instagram)

Actor Shama Sikander, who recently went LIVE from The Indian Express Facebook page, opened up about things that the lockdown has taught her. She also talked about her wedding with fiance James Milliron, which was supposed to happen this year.

Here are excerpts from the conversation:

How is lockdown treating you?

The lockdown is fine so far. There are days when I feel low and lost, which is normal. I am trying to introspect and using the time to know myself more.

What has the lockdown taught you?

I have always been spiritual and aware of my doings but during the lockdown, I have been able to connect with myself deeper. Also, learned that I was doing such extra spending on unnecessary things. How that money could have saved so many lives or provide them with food for survival.

I understood that our need is little but our greed is big. It (lockdown) taught me how everybody cares about everybody. That in times of need, humanity wins. I have learnt to be more accepting, to be grateful for smaller things. It crushes my soul to see people struggling to go back home and to not be able to be with their loved ones. It makes me think about life and be thankful about having a shelter, a healthy body, a family and loved ones around me.

Your wedding plans got postponed due to lockdown. Are you planning the wedding any differently now?

To be honest, it (lockdown) made me rethink about the spending we do on marriages. I was anyway against all the spending. I am not a person who wants to invite 1000 people at my wedding. All the money we spend in our lavish weddings can be used for other people’s benefits. So, I think I’ll have a simpler wedding than a lavish one. That’s what this lockdown is teaching me. Also, it all doesn’t matter when you have a loving family and a partner.

You have been vocal about violence against women. During the lockdown, there’s a rise in domestic violence cases. What’s your reaction to it?

It’s unfortunate. I don’t know what makes them think that they can beat up women or kids or anyone. Why would someone do that? There are other ways to release your rage. Also, violence is all about power game. To all the women, I don’t know why you take that violence. Don’t think so low of yourself. Someone can beat you only when you give them the power and show you’re scared. If you stand up against them, they won’t do it again and I can guarantee that. All women have the power to stand up. The limits are in the mind. Society conditions you (women) to control you but you’re an individual with immense power. No one should ever be allowed to even pull you down. I didn’t have an idea of how much strength I had before battling with bipolar and depression.

Who has been your saving grace during the lockdown?

It’s me. I believe you’re always your saving grace. I am my best friend. I made this friendship when I was going through depression and bipolar. I learnt that only you can help yourself because only you can truly know yourself. Yes, having my fiancé around did help. It helps to have someone who loves me so much, gives me freedom, makes me laugh and encourages me. We keep doing our goofy stuff. Also having a beautiful family and friends. Just the idea of me being so loved has been the biggest strength. I feel blessed to have received so much love.

Do you think things will take time to come back to normal?

We have never been normal. Our life was full of stress, corrupted and polluted. This (the life during the lockdown) is normal when we can spend quality time with people around and we are less stressed. The universe is trying to teach us to adapt to the future that is going to come. Of course, work is going to happen but it doesn’t need to be as crazy as before. We can find a balance. People will find ideas which will be normal as per today’s time and we will adapt. We will learn a new way of living. Also, I am glad we are taught the concept of hygiene. I am glad we are understanding the meaning of social distancing. I hope people maintain it.

Many series are being re-aired on television. Would you like Yeh Meri Life Hai to make a comeback?

I would love that. It was my first TV show. I have so many fond memories of working on that show. I enjoyed working on it. I am sure people will love it again. It was also ahead of its time. That show gave me what I have today. I am going to be forever grateful.

If you could go back to the past, would you like to change anything about your life?

I don’t think I’ll want to change anything because the first time I faced the camera led to all the things that have happened in life so far. It has made me what I am today. I accept life as it is. It’s been challenging yet beautiful.

Will you come back to television?

I’m not sure. If something great comes up, why not. Otherwise, I am enjoying films and web series. TV is still regressive and old thinking, I’ll like to move with time.

What sort of content appeals to you?

I like intelligent content. I cannot watch a daily soap, which is fake and going on and on. OTT content is realistic and portrays what’s happening today.

You were also offered Bigg Boss multiple times.

I don’t see myself in that house, at least till now. I’m not that person who is hungry for that much negativity. I will lose my calm for sure. I don’t get sadistic pleasure over silly things or to see people fight only because it’s important. I think it makes us mentally sick. So, not until now.

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