This is part two of the story of Mary Kom the five times World Champion who rose beyond her means to become a boxer and an international star. Do read part 1 of the post to know about her early childhood struggles and how another boxer inspired her to take up boxing.
For others here is a quick recap,
Getting into boxing in 2000 MC Mary Kom rapidly rose to fame with her unstoppable grit and unbeatable style inside the ring. She never let her modest background come in the way of her dream and soon became a state champion. After winning numerous national championships, in 2003 Mary was about to take her flight to her first international event when her passport and luggage got stolen…
An International Champion
Mary Kom decided on that fateful day to go to Bangkok in spite of her parents asking her to return. She was surely scared and worried about her lost passport and bag, but for a woman who had battled with tight situations constantly, it was just another day. And she proved it by winning the finals of the Asian women’s championship in Hissar in the 46 Kg category.
She went on to win the second and the third Asian Women’s Championship as well.
The first AIBA World Women’s Boxing Championship in Scranton, USA was held in 2001 and Mary was just 18 years old at the time and a new entrant into the boxing world. She settled for Silver in this event losing to a Hulya Sahin of Turkey. But the second, third, fourth, and fifth year of the events were completely dominated by Mary when she won Gold every single time. In Barbados this year, she again did what no woman or man from India has ever done. She won the final yet again and brought back the Gold fifth time consecutively to the country. Stunned by her charisma inside the ring AIBA even conferred her with the title of ‘Magnificent Mary’ in 2008.
In 2004 Mary received Arjuna award for her accomplishments in the sporting world by the President of India and her once sceptical father was by his daughter’s side when she received the award. While Mary kept on winning national and international events, recognition poured in from all corners. She received the Padma shri and in 2009, the prize for her hard work came in the form of the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna Award, the highest sporting honor of India. Mary had become a legend.
The Government of Manipur gave her the post of Sub-inspector of police in 2005. She was promoted to inspector rank in 2008 and again to the post of Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) in 2010.
From Daughter to a Wife & Mother
The journey from a struggling childhood to a teenage sporting sensation had not been easy for Mary Kom. And while she continued to put her heart and soul into boxing, K.Onler Kom came into her life. He was the friend, philosopher and guide Mary had missed growing up and the two tied the knot in 2005 to bind their relationship for a lifetime.
The couple soon became parents to adorable twins and again, Mary was standing on the crossroads. Tradition asked her to quit professional boxing and settle for the life of a doting wife and a caring mother. But Mary was not made to follow traditions, and the person who actually coaxed her to keep going was her husband who believed in her dreams as much as she did.
While many were sceptical if a mother of two kids would actually be able to regain her powerful stature in the boxing world, Mary silenced everyone by winning not one but two international golds after becoming a mother.
Chasing her Dreams
Mary Kom is now eyeing the Olympic Gold for India in the 2012 London Olympics and this dream is being supported by the NGO Olympic Gold Quest.
She has no time to bask in the glory of her recent success because she knows that there is no substitute for hard work and if she wants to achieve the greatest, she has to constantly strive to become tougher than ever before. She takes care of her family, finds time to encourage new talents, keeps her smile in place constantly and keeps training for the bigger goal.
India is not a traditional Medal winner in Olympics and if there is any Indian who has the capacity to break this tradition, it is MC Mary Kom, the women who broke every shackle restricting her dreams to become Five times world Champion, the five star boxer of India.