Three years ago
I moved back home today after spending six months living in a college dorm. When I went
home, my mother and Mrs. Sharma were there. Mrs. Sharma is our family friend and neighbor,
who lives 10 minutes away. Although I admire her, I find it repulsive that she consistently shows
up at our place when I return home or when something significant happens. Did she possibly
foresee my impending return? I firmly believe that she did. Warm hugs were given to me. After
that, I took shower, and then returned to see my mother and Mrs. Sharma. My mother was laughing and chatting with Mrs. Sharma. I waited on the sofa as my mum prepared a cup of coffee for me.
The aches from travel always lessened after taking a sip of it.
‘Do you remember what I questioned you about on the day of your engineering entrance result,
Maya’? A minute later, Mrs. Sharma questioned me.
The vivid memory of the disappointing event once more flashed before my eyes.
Five years ago
Have you played hopscotch before?
Yes, I answered.
Why is Mrs. Sharma questioning me in this manner? Did she notice the tears that were rolling
down my eyes? I did my best to contain my tears, but I was unable to do so. Or perhaps she
noticed the disappointment in my parent’s eyes at my performance. She undoubtedly witnessed
the anxious nights I spent getting ready for the entrance, so perhaps she is attempting to
empathize with me.
She recognized my brows furrowing and inquisitive eyes. She gave me a head pat, grinned, and
then returned to the kitchen, where my parents were already seated. Neither I nor she sought to
grasp what she was trying to communicate. I lingered on the porch with a cup of coffee and an
endless supply of thoughts. I couldn’t crack the engineering entrance exam. For me, studying
math and physics has always been troublesome. I anticipated this happening and had previously
made preparations for today, but seeing the disappointment in my parent’s eyes made me feel
unqualified to plan my own future. They haven’t spoken a word to me about the outcome,
perhaps due to Mrs. Sharma’s presence. Why would any parent chastise their kid in front of
Three of my cousins are studying engineering on full scholarships, while two of them are in
medical school. No, my competence was not questioned, but neither were my parents’ statements ever motivating to me. This made me doubt my independence, despite the fact that some of my cousins are younger than I am.
It’s been two years. I tried my best to avoid drawing attention to myself and haven’t been myself
up until today. I’m unable to look myself in the eye. Despite doing all in my power to be the best
version of myself, I have a constant fear of taking the next step. I resembled the crumbling
structure that can never be rebuilt to be what it once was.
Oh god! How many thoughts pass through the mind in a split second?
I never gave her question a second consideration, so I can’t comprehend why she would still be
asking me it two years later. She recognized my silence once again. “In order to complete the
game of hopscotch, you must maintain balance and move from step to step. The game must be
fun for you to advance. If you put pressure on yourself, you might succeed in the first level, but I
can tell you that you will lose your equilibrium after a while. Prior to all of that, you must be able
to correctly draw the hopscotch diagram. Maya, you must have self-assurance, proceed
cautiously, have faith in yourself, and take pleasure in any game you play. You must find joy in
it, I say again”.
She was taking it somewhere, I know where.
“You’re too young to change who you are and let your spark fade. Simply be assured of yourself,
and consider only yourself”. She grinned as she patted my head again. “Despite the fact that you
are no longer a baby, my little one, I have watched you grow and I still have faith in you. You
are the most beloved one of your parents, and they too have faith in you. Your name resembles
how significant you are to your parents, Maya. They may not have expressed it to you, but they
admire and believe in you. The design or drawing of your journey is entirely up to you. Simply
have confidence in yourself right now and don’t be frightened to engage in the start-and-stop
game of life”.
Mrs. Sharma left me thinking while leaving again to go where my mother was. When I reflect, I
see that the incident was only a little one in my life, but because I didn’t develop self-assurance
and faith in the wake of it, I was left helpless.
I simply wasn’t able to pass the engineering admission exam, not that my entire life is over.
Honestly, I did think too much. I’m a microbiology undergraduate student now. Yes, the faculty I
worked so hard to get into is very much different from the faculty I currently am studying.
Regardless of it, I am the same person, over thinking has caused my enjoyment to become hazy,
but I won’t allow it now. Even though I have scars from previous experiences, I’m willing to
concentrate on improving myself today compared to yesterday.
How could someone’s words make you feel so uneasy that you are now striving to be your best
self, not trying, but you’re working on it now, that you’re not frightened to take the second step
once more? It was a minor incident in my life that started out horrifying but ended up being
magical. Perhaps it is the trials of life. You can sometimes lose and sometimes win. The most
important thing is to embrace the outcome in order to actually experience it.
So master the rules to play the game of life. Embrace it and don’t forget to discover your Mrs.
Sharma, despite the fact that she occasionally disgusts you. (Crowds cheer and laugh)
Guys, life has so much to offer. Much more than what you can possibly ask for.
Standing in front of a sizable crowd and recounting a little episode in her life that turned out to
be magical, she finally convinced the crowd that the damaged building could be repaired and
designed more elegantly if given a second opportunity.
Maya began studying for her doctorate in microbiology at Cornell University, one of the top
universities, on a scholarship.
This is only one example of overcoming dysfunctional perceptions and becoming the person you
have always pictured. We don’t have to be anything other than ourselves, and we should
appreciate who we are wholehearted. Embrace life’s journey and strive to improve yourself on
both good and bad days.
Let the trials of life make you a giant, not a midget. – Warren Wiersbe