Jagruti Bhika


“I’m a single mom, 2 daughters. Been in tech for a couple of decades. Born in India. Came here when I was 15. My parents died when I was 13. I’m the youngest of 7. My brother is the oldest and I came to live with him. I didn’t know English but I got into engineering college because that was the easiest option. I couldn’t major in literature…haha! I worked, got married, had 2 girls, had an amazing tech career. Moved to Hong Kong with my husband because he had a transfer there. It was a great experience but also my marriage fell apart there. He fell in love with somebody else, he decided to stay there. All of the sudden I was one of a kind in my community. People would see I was divorced and ask me what I did wrong. I didn’t do anything wrong, he fell in love with somebody. I did everything I was supposed to do. The first years when it was just me and my daughters I became completely secluded. I was suicidal. But you know…time does heal. At first, it was like, ‘I can’t wait for this day to be over.’ But then the years take over. I wonder how I worked 65-70 hrs/week for 12 years, and raised 2 daughters, and got them through good colleges, NYU and USC. Now I’m totally burned out. I’m gonna be 50 in 9 months. My girls are 24 and 21 and the purpose of Hive is for me to figure out what I’m doing next. This is kind of a weird time for me. I’m the kind of person who is spiritual. I just went on a 3-month backpacking trip, October, November, December, in Bhutan, Sri Lanka, and India. I’d never done anything like that in my life but it was amazing. When I was not here I felt relieved and relaxed.”

“What did you learn?”

“I learned that I don’t have to constantly run to the next thing. When I get something I’m constantly looking to the next thing…what I can do, what I can achieve, what I can be more of. I learned that even though that is who I have been, I don’t have to be that person anymore. I think partly it’s being in this area. It forces you to have that mentality. Our environment shapes us. The environment here is constantly changing. A lot of people creating. A lot of ideas being funded, a lot of ideas failing. So it feels like you have to be building all the time to not only survive but thrive.”


“The funny thing is is that the feeling from the trip lasted for about a month, and now I’m going back to my old self. I’m kinda scared about that. Hopefully being part of Hive will give me the grounding I need to stay on focused.”

“What do you think will help you stay grounded?”

“A few things. One, to have a community to feel like I belong. Second, I need to get away from time to time to places that are very opposite of Silicon valley. Third, I need to write more. Tell my stories more. Not tell for the world, but even just for my children. It’s like, ‘Hey, this is what mom’s going through, this is what mom has learned’. I feel like life is so busy and time with family is so precious. I need that precious time and also some do nothing time with my family.”


“When do you forget about time and get lost in the present?”

“…It’s funny that I can’t come up with something right away. I think when I’m creating something…painting. I’ll be like, ‘Hey, I can’t believe I’ve been doing this for 3 hours’.”

“Sounds like there’s something there.”

“Yeah, there’s that saying, ‘When I was young and clever I tried to change the world, now that I’m old and wise, I’m trying to change myself.”

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March 21, 2017