Shefali Shah has addressed the never-ending debate of reel vs real appearances in her latest Instagram post. The actress started the lengthy post with her recent flight experience and how she was told by an air hostess that she “looks different in-person”. She also spoke about an incident of “ridiculous lack of decency,” where a person told her, “TV pe toh achi lagti hai (you look better on television).” With this, Shefali Shah also asserted that she is “not a mannequin, nor a painting” but “as real as one can be.” The actress has shared that many times, people have been “judgemental” or have “reprimanded” her for being in her own skin, like she has “cheated” them.
Shefali Shah shared a photo of herself from a flight and wrote: “The air hostess sweetly took my breakfast order and suggested I don’t keep anything on the side on my seat cause it can slip into the crevices. I’ve lost many things, having not taken the advice in the past. I’m grateful for her kind advice and I did listen. She came back, I thought to reinstate the swallowing capacity of my seat but no. She came to appreciate my work and it was so heartwarming and wonderful to hear. She left me smiling to return yet again. This time to say- ‘Me and the other crew didn’t even recognise you. You look so different than you do on screen, but love your work.’ smiled and left. The ‘But’ planted a seed of doubt. Don’t know if what I saw in her eyes was appreciation, compassion, or sympathy.”
“She almost seemed sorry for me. Not saying but meaning ‘must be so deceiving and disappointing to look like someone and be appreciated for it but then in life waking up with your real self.’ She came back with my breakfast and served me very sweetly. Ever smiling. She wasn’t mean at all, she just seemed genuinely concerned at my genetics and awed by my makeup and hair artist’s magical expertise,” added the actress.
Shefali Shah said she was happy that at least this time, she was given a “choice of ambiguity,” where she could interpret the air hostess’ statement in any way she “wished.”
“My appetite had flown out of the sealed window at 1500 ft so I just sat with my coffee thinking maybe she meant I looked different as a character than Shefali does. Now, that is a compliment. I want to look like a character, and become the role I play. That’s my job, and that gives me immense pride. At least she left me with a choice of ambiguity. I could fill in the blanks as I wished,” wrote the actress and added, “But trust me this isn’t the worst that has been said to me. Some people have been judgemental and even reprimanding like I broke their trust for looking like myself. Like I’d cheated. A product bought online. Ordered something else, got something else.”
Narrating an “epic” incident, Shefali Shah wrote: “The most epic one was years ago when one person said ‘T.V pe toh achi lagti hai.’ I wasn’t angry, I was just amused at this ridiculous lack of decency. I wanted to give a smart one back – ‘At least I clean up well, what are you going to do with this face you are stuck with.’ but it didn’t seem worth it. To just make it clear, I don’t wake up perfectly. I’m not a mannequin, nor a painting. I am REAL, as real as one can be.”
In the comments section, fans and celebs, including Maria Gorettiz and Deepika Singh, lauded Shefali Shah for her body-positivity post. The Jalsa actress acknowledged all the heartwarming comments and wrote: “Thank you, so so sweet and kind of you all. I feel truly blessed for all the love you’ll give me. Truly do.”
Read her post here:
Shefali Shah is known for her performances in International Emmy Award-winning Delhi Crime, Dil Dhadakne Do, Jalsa, Darlings andDoctor G, among many others.