Monday, 21 January 2013

The First Day of the Rest of My Life

I graduated from IIMC last week, with summa cum laude no less. I say last week because that is when I went back to one of my favorite places in the world, walked up on that stage and received my Diploma. See I actually passed out last April but thanks to the cabinet reshuffle and the fact that ours is a government institution, albeit the best in my field in India, our convocation happened on 15th of January 2013.

The experience was bitter sweet at best. Heartbreaking at worst. I have worked for 6 months, quit my job, sat for an international level exam and found myself new job in the time it took for IIMC to organize our convocation, but it was not until later, tonight to be precise, when I started thinking what it actually meant. No I did not have some great epiphany or even a small one for that matter, what I did however find was something much more profound.

As I sat there reminiscencing I realized something. My childhood is well and truly behind me. While at college I could kid myself, even at 22, that I was still a kid, that my actions did not have an irrevocable effect on anyone's lives or livelihoods. That I could, no matter how bad things got, always run back crying to mum as if one of her world famous smiles and hugs had the power to rid the world of evil and bring about world peace. As I stood there posing for pictures, laughing, crying, remembering I also stood at the precipice of the rest of my life.

A curtain-raiser in which I played the starring role, and where I was the 'Sutradhar'. I truly believe that from here on out I get to decide and shape my future. I am in this sense the play-writer of the epic saga that is my life not merely narrator, spewing out words written before my time, on which I have no control at pre decided intervals. From here on out I get to decide whether I go left or right. Whether I travel the road not taken or the one often trodden. I get to walk on out and make something of myself. Something great, something worth remembering, something that is uniquely mine in essence.

And thinking all this, stringing together dreams for a future yet to come, I pause and listen to the little voice inside my head. The voice that is laughing at me. The one that is saying, 'You fool, forget the world of opportunities, the world full of bewitching choices that beckon to you. The only choice you need, the only road you will ever want to travel on, is the one that leads right back to where you've come from. Back to an age where presentations, marks and campaigns were the most important things in your life, when making it to classes at 8:30 am was the biggest challenge in life, when all it took to be happy was a group of girls, giggling, gossiping, working and a hostel room.'

Photo Credits: Mohit Agarwal