So, this is the last blog post I write as a free soul. 25 years (and few months more!) is what it has taken me to become a budding manager. And as I wait, with tremendous excitement to see what the future holds, there’s a small tinge of sadness, at leaving home.
But then, to new beginnings, eh?
There’s a (not so) short story, where there was a boy, who, because of circumstances at home, was shipped off to boarding school, in the middle of great tears from both the child and the parents. As time passed, this pampered kid became used to the rules of the hostel warden, where the only way to call home was to use a PCO booth in the hostel, which would wipe out his entire pocket money.
Slowly, and steadily, this boy became used to the food that was served in the mess, because he could not afford the food that was served in the canteen (remember that bit about calling home?), and his greatest fear was the the joys he shared with his parents, his brother, would soon become a distant memory.
The Indian education system is never kind, and this kid, after years of excellent performance, saw his grades dip. And as he finished of class 12, he’d moved from the late nineties, to the early eighties. The expectations of the parents that he would move to an IIT after school weighed heavy on him, so much that every single entrance test failure fell upon him like a ton of bricks. He’d hit adolescence too, and, there was this wonderful girl he fell in love with, a girl who broke his heart. If you meet this boy today, you’ll realize that the scars of those years in the hostel are still buried somewhere beneath. The pain that ran through the nerves when the hostel warden would use a wicket to discipline him, for having dirty socks still makes him wince. The other, bigger, cooler kids, who would bully him regardless of whatever he did still give him nightmares. He could never be good enough and a failure was met with taunts, and an award, with mockery.
The one time, when his room-mate slapped him so hard, that the braces inside his mouth tore through the inside of his lips, the kids around who would smash his glasses for fun, this kid had a rough life. But never did he complain, because he wanted to achieve something, be someone of consequence, and make his parents proud.
Engineering from a college in Karnataka was not easy too. With a mind that yearned to be a lawyer, Calculus and Electronic Circuits were simply not something he could do. But he had learnt how to keep his head above the water, and while the braces on the teeth had come off, they still left behind the insecurity.
Slowly, this kid decided to make himself the master of his fate. The grades improved, the days were tough. And one day, he decided that his emotions were his own to control. Tall, long fences were erected, and his walls kept people from getting close to his emotions, and he drew strength from his isolation.
Today, as that boy steps out, hoping he’s become the man he’s wanted to be, he’s finding it tough to wish away that self doubt, and then suddenly, with the hands of both his mother and father on his shoulders, they feel a lot stronger, and it seems like it will not be so hard going ahead.
To close, there’s not too much to say, except that the above story needed to be told. Maybe, the best time to get closure is when things are at the close anyway. Because, there is, simply put, a new life up ahead.
“I open at the close”