I sometimes wonder had I realised this fact during my school or college days my casket of memories would perhaps have been much more heavier. Which when reckoned at any point of my life would have given me endless laughter. Sigh! how foolish I was to have not realised that having an awful marksheet doesn't take away the liberty to stand beneath the open sky and laugh aloud. I can still get drenched in the rain, can enjoy the fragrance of petrichor and have all the liberty to get muddy! Above all having a low-graded marksheet can't shed off my resilience.
Life would have proved to be insipid had I not met those extraordinary souls during by graduation in Delhi. Those tutors helped me distinguish between study and learning. They made me realise learning can be fun too. They imbibed in me the hunger for knowledge. They appraised me of a world beyond marksheets where only learning matters and not studying; where only knowledge matters and not marks. I so clearly remember what one of my creative writing teachers once quoted, "If even a single student falls asleep while the teacher is teaching, it's not the student at fault but it's the teacher. If a teacher can't tickle the interest of his/her students, such persons should perhaps quit teaching." So, true was she!! Apparently there is not dearth of good students, but there's sheer need of empathising teachers.
At school we were taught to practice handwriting on bragging thoughts like 'an aimless person is like a rudderless boat tossing in an ocean.' As a child who barely knew what 'aim' or an 'aimless person' looked like, these audacious words pinched like something monstrous. Though I couldn't sketch the figure of an 'aimless person' but I certainly didn't want myself to be one among them. While I didn't even know the A, B, C of life; I went to pen down a book with words like AIM! After all things like 'aimless person' and rudderless boat were bombarded with enough artilleries of trauma. Yes, this made me contemplate my aims.
I kept pondering upon few of those age old elite professions. After all I didn't want to be branded as an 'aimless person' or a 'rudderless boat.' But, what I failed to realise was that my aims weren't mine! My aims were not the reflection of my likes, my interests or what I craved for, rather these were the reflections of what people in my social sphere wanted me to become! They weren't bad people at all, but perhaps they were too good to understand me.
A big fool I was! I failed to realise that it's only a rudderless boat that has the liberty to float anywhere and everywhere. It's only a rudderless boat which can dance with the blithe breeze, which can play with the maddening waves. It's only a rudderless boat which doesn't know what's next to unfold making the journey an enthralling one. Perhaps I too wanted to be a rudderless boat. I choose to be a rudderless boat. I want to get absorbed in unveiling the mystery of life. I do not want to know my tomorrow, but I want to explore the journey finding it.
Someone truly said, great minds and great personalities do not always have great marksheets. A beautiful marksheet doesn't necessarily induce a blissful and great life. There are millions, literally millions of people with great marks. Having 95% doesn't make you special. Thinking differently will make you special. The importance of marks, results would perish within a months time. It's just an exam. All that will remain is you as a person, your smile, your resilience and ability to conquer failures.
At the present juncture when I see my published pieces, I see my bylined write-ups; nobody comes to me looking for my marksheets. They either pour in their soul stirring praises or critique on how I could improve. I know I haven't even taken a half step yet. Still, it's fun discerning that little journey to know you have learnt a bounty of things. For many I am still a failure. Well, if this is what a failure is to be, I would love to fail again and again.
What I always tell people is there's nothing called 'fail' and folks should never get intimidated by failures. Not succeeding in a certain task only shows that was not the correct way of pursuing it and thousand other right paths yet remain to be explored. After all FAIL stands for First Attempt In Learning.
Believe me life is certainly a cakewalk, provided you know how to track-down the road laid with cakes.
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