Life’s best lesson

Yesterday, I was pondering over changing times in my life.

During my childhood, my mom took great efforts to get my admission done in a very good school. She was a very good mother taking care of her children to the best of her capability. I realized very soon that I need to make her happy so that her efforts don’t go in vain. I tried my best to study as much as possible and became a regular rank-holder in my school. I used to play few sports, but I was not regular with them. All my friends would call me a over-studious girl, but I didn’t bother. The fact was that I loved to play too, but the only thing on my mind then was that my studies were more important. I had to study well and score well to see the wonderful smile of happiness and satisfaction on my dear mother’s face. As my performance got better, the expectations from the family also increased. I had to be the topper always and I worked hard to stay one. During this period, I completely ignored sports. I was doing well in academics, but often faced health issues. That was due to lack of exercise or play. I learnt a lesson then that I should have played a little more. I never regretted for what I did as I always got happiness after seeing the smile on my mother’s face.

When I was doing my engineering, I stayed with my uncles and their families in Pune. It was a joint family. I faced tough times during my stay there and I wished to move out. But, my dad felt that it would not look good if I stayed outside despite having a family there. I faced all the hardship to keep my dad happy. I had severe issues of back-ache then, but I ignored all of them and tried my level best to perform as good as possible in my exams. I passed out engineering with distinction and left from Pune and returned to my home-town.

After my engineering I wished to do post-graduation. I had already given some entrance exams after engineering, but had not scored so well that I could get a scholarship. When I returned home, I saw my father going through a financial crisis. The new business that he set up was not coming up the way he expected. It was quite unfortunate that soon after he started the business the market conditions went bad. My parents always treated me like a son. After seeing him struggling, I realized that I need to give up on my plan of studying further and help out my father in his tough times. I started looking out for a job and I got one in Bangalore.

I came to Bangalore with a lot of hope of changing things for myself and for my family. I started working and I enjoyed doing it. Over a period of time, I became more confident and independent. I helped out my family as much as possible from my end. I gave the entrance exam again, but failed to score up to the mark. I couldn’t manage studying and work at the same time then as those were the initial days of work for me. Hence, I thought I’d delay my plan of studying again for a while. Over a period of time, I became better with what I was working on and I was happy with it. I supported my parents as a child should do and I felt really good about it. My parents were also really proud of me. All of my relatives looked at me with great respect. I was taking better care of my health and was doing some kind of exercise too. I didn’t wish to have health issues again and I tried my best to keep myself away from them.

One fine day, my family wanted me to leave the job and go back. They either wanted me to quit my job or change the job location. I wasn’t prepared to do either of the two. I didn’t wish to leave the place where I reached after a lot of struggle and sacrifices in my life. The place had brought about the best of changes in me and wished to stay back. I tried out work-from-home options for a while to be with them, but they didn’t work out. I took my first stand in life. I told my family members that I cannot leave the place or my job which I liked. I would always support them in all ways as I did before, but I would not compromise on my job. During that period, it took time for them to understand my stand as it was the first time in life I stood up for myself. I had no intention to hurt any of my family members, but just wanted them to realize I need to be happy to keep them happy. I knew I could give best support to them only after keeping myself happy and satisfied. The job and the place where I stayed gave that happiness to me.

After sometime, I met the best person of my life. I fell in love. While I was growing up, I had a lot of dreams related to my life-partner. I met the person who was even better than what I saw in dreams, but there was one problem. He belonged to another caste and I could see that it wouldn’t be easy convincing my parents. Then, I took my second stand in life. I struggled to convince my parents, got married to the best person and am happy now. Things were not easy, but I am happy that everything settled down. Recently, during my last visit home, I realized that people around me respect me a lot even now. It feels so nice after getting that respect and I am sure my parents also understand now that the stands I took were really necessary.

I learnt – It is good to do sacrifices in life to make others happy only when they keep you happy too. But, when you realize the sacrifices will make you unhappy or change you as person, there is not point in doing them. Only if you are happy you can keep the others happy. This is my mantra of life now!

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