Sitting in front of his computer screen, he was wondering how to start. All the emotions that flowed, all the memories, all the little things that were taking him back to the time he had actually lived. Rajat was a shy boy, very complicated from inside, someone who always thought in the long term. Right now what was really mattering to him was to assemble all those that he so badly wanted to let the world know but it was becoming difficult. With a sense of hopelessness he threw himself back, an old modified version of a friendship song was playing in his headphone. He closed his eyes and suddenly all those initial days, the very first day, the days that he almost dreaded before and cherished after they passed came flashing.
Rajat came from a small town, not known to many and much behind the modern times.Though he belonged to a well to do and one of the happening families in the town he had never actually realised he would be a little different in a crowd full of children from big cities and children who were better off in many aspects. His difference was in the way he knew life itself.
It was a day to remember, Rajat was thirteen now and as every child starts thinking with every passing birthday that now they have grown up enough to make all the decisions in life. Same was the case with Rajat. He knew it was the perfect time to start with another phase of his life. Interestingly he was afraid and excited at the same time. Having his father beside him, he made it through the gates. The atmosphere inside was edgy for him. His mind was wondering how to face a group of children who will soon be his classmates, some friends. Although he knew he had got all the moral support from his father and his going to be principal yet he was unsure how will it all be. As he sat down in the class, a trial session for a few lessons, he could feel the tension building up inside him. His conscience told him he was being noticed and probably judged by many in front and behind him.
He noticed sly smiles in those little crooked faces some were old some as he was hoping were new. The lessons passed with every hour and finally as the bell rang signalling the school ending he rushed out. In the new dormitory his apparent new home he saw his father standing. He could mark the easy signs even if both of them hardly confessed to each other how they felt. His bed was made, locker settled shoes and slippers on the rack. He was going to stay there. As his mother held him for the one last time he was choking from inside. He knew he had to act strong, at least that was what he always wanted to prove to his father, he wanted respect for himself in their eyes, in all those eyes who were eagerly waiting to following the “how it is all going with him” news back home.
They left. With them went all those day to day parental concerns, his mothers silly insecurities, his dependence on a few things if not all. What they left behind was a sacrifice. A sacrifice of not seeing their child grow from a child to a carefree teen to a responsible adult. Rajat would cry for several weeks and made unreasonable requests to take him back but slowly but swiftly things changed for him. He would eventually fall in love with the dusty flat, with the never settled dormitory and with the cold breeze that promised him hope.
Little did the shy small town boy almost afraid of everything who had to fight with the modernity of the world realize, he will soon get nostalgic passing through the very same gates that welcomed him once would be bidding him farewell, the once edgy atmosphere would filter him into an individual who people would look upto and admire and the sly crooked smiles that would soon burst into tears with him leaving their very vicinity, the many arms that would hold him tight would finally give in to let him go. He would find selfless friends, innocent love and unconditional care.
He realized it was over three hours that he had been sitting in front of the computer.The music had stopped, he could hear the cars honking outside along with the smooth running ceiling fan over him. He leaned forward, a wide smile crossed his face. Somewhere between “family before friends” and “Sab ja rahen hain saalon!!!!! ” , he had changed.
5 thoughts on “First Steps…”
Left me teray eyed as i read this. Absolutely relatable and very well written Mish. Really loved it ❤.
The crying was relatable ??:)
Left me teary eyed as i read this. Absolutely relatable and very well written Mish. Really loved it ❤.
It’s well written. And absolutely relatable. The most sad part is that all the people who aren’t associated with the boarding culture in schools only think of the parent’s sacrifice as being too large leaving their child to an unknown place, they don’t and will never realise how much more this journey becomes as it’s initiated. There’s a bond between the children/parent and the school which is quite unexplainable but beautiful.
Well said my young friend. We from the boarding school relate quite easily to your heartfelt feelings. Life is like that…so often we realise the greatness of a place when its time to say good bye and move on. Wishing you a glorious future.
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