A very inspirational story, Shilpi! I am so pleased you found your path. Too often we allow ourselves to be defined by others, our lives to be limited by what "should" happen.

When I was a child, my best friend was not a good student or a good daughter. She was often in trouble, always a worry to her mother. Although we had little in common, my friend and I stayed close because of our history together.

Everyone told me that I, the good student and obedient daughter, would be successful while my friend would not.

Our lives did not turn out that way.

She married well and I did not (at the time). I struggled working 60 hours a week while my then-husband refused to work a minute over 40 hours and spent weekends watching movies at home while I worked. I took care of everything at home after my long hours at my job.

My friend married a successful man with a good business. She learned the business from him and they ran it together. They prospered while we did not.

I was supposed to be the success but she was.

Life is rarely what we expect it to be. We make choices that have a reason at the time but the reason is not to make us successful. The reason is to teach us what we need to learn.

Years have passed. I have a new husband and a new life. We live modestly but very happily. I consider that statement proof of my success.

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