It is easy to brag about how our last name means princess but it is very hard to become that princess. All my life, I have explained to people what Kaur means but I never understood myself. Does a girl become a princess by perfectly styled hair, jewelry, make up, dress and an attitude to match? Or does a girl become a princess by her actions? What is more important look, actions or both?
I spent 20 years of my life chasing after the beauty queen look so I can be princess just like my name suggests. Fortunately (at the time unfortunately) for me my parents were against make up, cutting hair, revealing clothes and just about everything that I believe would make me glamorous. My parents were against it but that didn’t stop me from trying, after all I had to live up to my name. For 20 years I tried to do whatever possible to look like a princess. But I never achieved nothing more than becoming daddy’s little princess, just like every other girl. Then I meet a true Kaur that taught me showed me what being a princess is all about.
Tall and proud she stood in a crowded room where no one else could even compare to her. She was one of the three turbaned women in the room that day but yet, she was nothing like the others. She had on the simplest white bana, turban (no ornaments) and easy smile. I knew I wanted to be like her and approached her to ask her secret, how did she become a princess? I asked question after question and she just smiled, laughed and answered each question. I quickly learned she had discovered Sikh less than a year and immersed herself so deeply into it that she wore her bana and turban at all times. I had been a Sikh for 20 years and had never worn the bana or a turban. She was going to take amrit after having been a Sikh for less than a year. I had been a Sikh for 20 years, considered taking Amrit but had never been so passionate about it, not like her. Talking to her that day, made me realize she was the true daughter of Guru Gobind Singh Ji and I was just an imposter. I wanted to be a princess, a true daughter of Guru Gobind Singh Ji and I knew I couldn’t do it alone.
I asked this princess to give me a crown, a turban of my own. The next week she showed up to Gurudwara Sahib with enough turban material to tie turbans on the whole Punjabi class. That day only two students had the desire to receive the beautiful gift she brought; luckily I was one of them. After that she came just one more week and helped me tie my turban. In those two weeks the sangat got used to seeing me in a turban and I got scared of going turban less to the Gurudwara for people might think I was just doing it to impress my new friend. So every Sunday for about a month or two I would tie a turban and if it didn’t work out nice, I would just cover with my chuni. After Gurudwara Sahib I would head to work in my bana and talk to my customers about Sikhi and the turban. I became the Sunday Sikh.
The Sangat didn’t mind but my customers quickly caught up and questioned my Sunday Sikh appearance and attitude. I was still an imposter, still not a princess. So, I started wearing the turban a couple times a week. I figured it’s hard to wear a turban because it comes with great responsibility. Every time I tie it, I have to always smile, be kind, live up to Sikhi like Guru Ji wanted us to and pretty much be the perfect princess. It is not easy work being a princess and I just wasn’t ready for it. It is easy to look like a princess but hard to become a true princess. As I struggled to wear my turban every day and act like a true princess, the good sikh sangat in my life began pestering me about reading my nitnem. Slowly but surely with help of the good sangat in my life I incorporated nitnem in my life and with the encouragement from the customers at work, I incorporated the turban as my daily wear. I took a big step towards becoming a princess by doing that.
The Nitnem brought a change within me and the bana supported the change on the outside. Without even realizing it, when I least expected it, I became a princess. I am not a full-fledged princess of Guru Gobind Singh Ji yet because I have not received the blessings of Amrit to officially proclaim me a princess. But I am a princess in training that is almost ready to be blessed. Today a random stranger came up to me and said I looked like a princess because of the beautiful turban on my head. Here is random stranger that has no clue who Sikhs are, what the turban means but still knows it transforms a Kaur into a princess.
I am sorry Guru Ji that I came so late to you and wasted 20 years of the precious life you gave me being the false princess. Guru Ji, please bless me with Amrit soon and allow me to remain a true princess for life.