She dreamed to be a model at the age of fifteen. In her young days, she copied actress Zenat Aman and Parveen Bobi. She got an offer from the Gujrat movie. But her papa did not accept her dream. After completing her studies she did a job. But she could not continue that job for married life and household chores. After twenty-five years of her marriage finally, she becomes a model. Now she understands that this is not important what other people said. She quotes, ‘Age is no bar, sopno ka koi expiry nehi hota. It means there is no expiry date for a dream and she proved it at the age of 50 by wearing a bikini on her photoshoot.’
Mira said, ‘Ever since I was a little girl, I dreamt of being a model. And I was a cute kid, so people would say, ‘Modelling karo, filmo mein jao.’ It means do modeling, go, and work for the film.’
‘But back then, girls were meant to be at home and if they wanted to work, it had to be a ‘respectable job’. So I started sneaking around to participate in plays. I’d try to copy Zeenat Aman and Parveen Babi. I even got an offer for a Gujarati movie–I was so excited, but when Papa got to know he said, ‘Achhe ghar ke ladkiyan yeh sab nahi karti.’ It means a good daughter did not do this kind of work. I didn’t want to rebel so I gave my dream up,’ she added.
Mira expresses to the HOB, ‘I went about completing my graduation, post-graduation and then got a job as an admin officer. There, I met my husband. We fell in love and got married. I gave up my job and got involved in household chores (ghar grihasti)’.
Mira says, ‘I was so devoted towards being a good wife and a good mother that my life revolved around them. I lost my identity, so after 20 years of marriage, I applied for a teacher’s job. Again, it was difficult because I was 45 and they wanted ‘young teachers’, but I proved everyone wrong by first getting the job and then winning the ‘most active teacher’ award!’
As Mira says, ‘Once while scrolling online, I came across a beauty pageant ad that said, ‘Age no bar.’ That was my moment, I applied immediately. That evening, I told my family that I wanted to give this a photoshoot and they were so supportive!’
She said, ‘I groomed myself for the pageant and brought home the 1st Runner Up title. My kids said, ‘Maa, we are so proud of you.’ The feeling was unreal! I took part in 1 more pageant and won again! And at 50, I made my modeling profile. But brands didn’t want an older model, they wanted someone younger.’
Mira said, ‘I realized that even lingerie models are always from the younger age bracket. There would be a plus-size section, but nothing for older women. That fueled my desire to become a lingerie model. A start-up approached me, but they wanted me to model with cotton bras, almost as if lacy lingerie wasn’t meant for a 50-year-old.’
Mira said, ‘So, I got a shoot done for myself and posted it online. The reaction was overwhelming. Most people applauded me for my confidence, but others commented saying, ‘Umar toh dekh li hoti.’ It means to see your age. It’s so hypocritical because Salman Khan roaming shirtless at 50 is Dabangg, but this is shameful?’
Mira said, ‘A ‘well-educated’ close friend once told me, ‘Yeh kya kar rahi hai?’ it means what are you doing at this age. But I was past caring about what other people had to say. At 50 I realized a dream I had since I was 15 because I believe that age is not a cage and sapno ki koi expiry nahi hoti! It means there is no expiry date for a dream.’