Zeenat Aman's birthday plans went for a toss when the veteran actress felt unwell on her special day on November 19.
"I had booked for Ranthambore (in Rajasthan) with my sons but I had to cancel because I am not well. So I plan to spend quality time at home," Zeenat says.
She was the hottest sex icon during her prime. Today, at 62, she's content playing doting mother to her sons, Azaan and Zahaan.
"I can't help thinking about how fortunate I am to be alive and healthy," she continues. "So many people I've known closely like (husband) Mazhar Khan, Smita Patil and Parveen Babi are no longer with us. One is just so happy and grateful for the gift of life, reasonable health and family and friends to love.”
Looking back at her beautiful career, Zeenat says, “You know, at that time one didn't look at what was done as exploitative. In hindsight, it may seem like a commercial gambit. But when I did it, I didn't think I was doing anything bold. I did it all with such confidence. Now as I look back, I think certain scenes were a little too sensuous."
Zeenat’s sons are not interested in her films. "They are so much into their own lives, they aren't interested in my films, though the elder one has seen some of them. Today my sons have their own life. But they've given my life a whole dimension “
Zeenat’s birthday wish? "Life's so unpredictable. You never know when the next high or low will strike you. The trick is just to flow with the tide. I think a person's true worth is measured during times of failure. It's up to the individual to make the best of what life has dealt. I believe if life hands you lemons, you make lemonade. I'm an eternal optimist. I've no regrets. I've people who love me. I've a wonderful life. I'm grateful for what I have."
In the picture: Zeenat Aman. Photograph: Pradeep Bandekar