In probably the toughest time of her life recently, actor Shilpa Shetty Kundra stood her ground and emerged stronger. And her kids — Viaan (9) and Samisha (2) — are the reasons she managed to do it. Opening up for the first time about overcoming the negativity around her family, she admits that it was hard.
“I have always believed that in life, you have to find a purpose. Even in the chaos, my purpose was my children and will always be them. Stepping out in difficult times, with a brave front, to go back to work was only to show my kids, [especially my son] because he is at an age where he understands things,” Kundra says.
The 46-year-old surprised many when she was seen fulfilling her professional commitments even during testing times. She wanted to set an example for him, that come what may, work shouldn’t suffer. Kundra explains, “I wanted to show Viaan that even in difficult circumstances, you have to have work ethics, and have to rise like a phoenix. He has learnt through me, and I hope I am able to give them the values our parents inculcated in us. For me to get out there and start working was teaching my son through practice. You are never prepared for hardships in life. They suddenly hit you, but they make you stronger. I didn’t know I was strong, but it’s a good feeling to know I can combat anything now.”
She takes inspiration from her own mother, Sunanda Shetty, and calls her a role model, since she, too, managed her children along with work. “I was raised by a strong woman. I am one because of her. While I have great help with my mum, mother-in-law and nanny, I feel there’s no one who can do the job better than a mother can. When I go to work, I don’t hold any guilt as I give a lot of time to my kids, even more than what my mother gave me. She would leave at 7.30am, and come only after 7.30pm, and we turned out great. My mother always encourages me and says, ‘This is your time, you have the luxury to give [time] to your kids, you should do that’,” she ends.