Cupid strikes and life becomes topsy-turvy. There is something about love that ceases mind to work and forces heart to love unconditionally. When Shikha met Ankush in 2000 something similar happened. Hailing from the famous Narula family of Bhubaneswar she was running a billiards parlor where she met Ankush, a state level snooker player who was young, brash, handsome, honest and emotional. There was something magical about their relationship that made them flock towards each other. Coming from two different backgrounds it was as if they were just not meant to be but the universe had already conspired and they tied the nuptial knots in spite of all odds after 2 years of courtship.
The real world of struggle and challenges began when they realized that love was not enough to survive and it fueled them with the desire of doing things on their own. Ankush completed his MBA and did a bunch of jobs here and there. Young and carefree he did whatever came his way to support his family and finally now he is on his own running a real estate firm.
Meanwhile, Shikha worked her heart out at various places. She tried to balance work life as much as she could and gave Ankush ample of space and time to grow professionally. She would do everything that came in her kitty. From content writing at Naukri.com to being a teacher, she has done it all. With Masters in Clinical Psychology and Counselling, she was always a good student and had also attained scholarship while doing her Master’s from Utkal University. However with marriage comes baby in a carriage and at some point of time, you do have to make certain choices and side few dreams. With a little angel in her hand, it was time to quit corporate jobs and do something of her own.
Being creative and artistic, fashion was something that had always excited her. She would design her own clothes and look fashionable in whatever she wore. Her friends would often compliment her and that’s how the idea of starting a Boutique from home came to her. That way she could give ample of time to her daughter and also unleash her creativity. Shikha started her own brand Carnations right from scratch. Carnations is a clothing store with unique and upbeat, chic and urbane tunics, smart casuals and ethnic festive wear very creatively designed by Shikha herself. She has a loom at home where like an artisan she creates magic with her fingers. With birds chirping around and music playing in the background, her workstation in the balcony is her favorite spot in the house. She can spend hours creating magic with thread and cloth. It’s been over three years since she launched her brand name and is a happy entrepreneur bringing smiles across the face of plenty of customers. She is known for her art, craft and creative perfection.
It’s not been an easy journey for Shikha and says working from home is the toughest task any woman can do. When you go to the office you are at least cut off from household choirs for 8-10 hours and someone else does it. But when you are a full-time mother and an entrepreneur doing your work from home, you can neither neglect your kitchen nor your business. You are cooking with one hand and weaving with the other. You are dressing up your daughter one side and changing dresses of the mannequins at the other. When people remark that it’s easy working from home they forget how challenging it is simultaneously managing both house and work.
Today as we sip a cup of coffee together she remarks, life has been good but hard too. It was not a cakewalk for either of them post marriage but they worked their way out and resolved every problem together. Life changed for good when their little daughter Aanya came in their arms and it strengthened their bond of love and marriage forever and ever. Together they have grown in life and believe in hard work and love at all times. It’s been 13 memorable years of both highs and lows and they know that they have to stay strong no matter what. There is a certain amount of self-respect when you do not just build your home but house together with your own hands and both Ankush and Shikha are proud to share this feeling together. Their saga of love and success is all about self-respect and they claim to be self-made despite all odds on life. Club Cafebiz salutes such real life heroes who don’t succumb to situations and give their best no matter what.