ISLAMABAD (Online )- In an open discussion on her own podcast, fashion designer Maria Butt, who often garners more attention for her thoughts than her designs, recounted some secret tales of hardship and success.

Butt admitted that the road to success wasn’t an easy one for her despite having a successful career lasting more than two decades. The designer had several challenges following her divorce, including being a single mother who struggled to make ends meet and dealing with the “fashion mafia” who were working against her at the lowest moment in her career.

Butt and her companion Afia discussed their struggles, both financial and emotional, along the way to success in the most recent edition of Maria B’s podcast Dialogue with Maria B. Someone once requested me to consider my life and describe a pivotal experience a few years ago. When I was just divorced, my daughter Fatima was 3 years old, my business was at an all-time low, I could hardly pay my staff, and I lived in a leased property, that period for me was one of the lowest points in my life, she said.

On her official Instagram account, Butt also posted a sneak peek of the podcast interview. “Life’s trials… untold tales of lessons learned through failure. Never consider society or other people; just consider Allah’s favour,” she stated. Butt discussed in the video how people just see her large, opulent home and hardly realise that it took her 20 years of financial hardship to get here.

I spent roughly 20 years renting a place to reside. And I’ve always wished I had my own home. “I would work so hard for it, and all my friends know how hard I would work for it, but something would take it away from me,” she shouted, adding that she is thankful for the life she now has.

Although her parents tried to assist her, Butt preferred that her daughter sustain herself. I was filled with the feminism that I would handle things on my own. I promised myself that I would work and support my kid on my own. But I didn’t understand that the process of going through a divorce and recovering from it moves so slowly and takes a long time. You’re alone, and both your physical and emotional health are compromised, she added.

“My ability to think creatively and to work was at an all-time low. My attention was impaired. Although I wouldn’t describe it as depression, I did feel frustrated and angry with God for why He had allowed these difficulties in my life. My company began to suffer to the point that, for a month, I was unsure how to pay my workers’ wages,” she sobbed. “My father, who oversaw accounting at the time, saw the dire state of the financial position. For the firm to survive, we needed money. He secretly sold our family’s home, the only property he had, and invested 80% of the proceeds in my company.

Butt also revealed the existence of a purported “fashion mafia” that fiercely opposed her, mostly because she was a “awaami designer” or a designer for the common man. “Everyone in the ‘fashion mafia’ was against me. They had the opinion that I would never succeed. There was a great deal of strain. In Lahore, there were also speculations that Maria had divorced and received billions in alimony. I would just listen to them while contemplating the situation in my rental home, she recounted.

Butt bucked their expectations and kept on forging her own route to success in spite of their predictions of failure. “I learned from that experience that society may speak about anything without understanding the underlying facts. The rumours are seldom close to the truth. So, let everyone express themselves as they see fit. That Allah is aware is what matters. Whatever they may name me, as long as I know that God is beside me, I will be alright. I have no problems now, she said.

“However, it’s false to believe that successful people have always been successful. Because of my adolescent rebellions, my failed love marriage, the fashion mafia crisis, the pleasure and challenges of being a single mother, and my battles with loneliness, I am the Maria I am today.

I learned something from everything, she said. “Allah trained me to be the one I am, and that’s why I’m the strong, outspoken, and brave woman I am today.”

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