In Difficult Times
There were times when I felt lonely and alone. It happens to all of us. That exam which did not go right, a relationship which suddenly changed, a mistake that should not have been. The answer to many of these unpleasant situations is to lock oneself in a room and brood. I wish I had not done that. I wish I had studied more. I wish I had not said that. Life doesn’t always go to plan.
In moments like these, you can always count on your parents. Their love is unconditional. It does not expect anything back. It is just there – invisible like oxygen in the air. Every breath has it. However old we grow, parents are always there for their children. And yes, we will always be children for them. So, in these moments, when you feel the world has turned against you, when nothing seems to be going right, always remember that you have your parents. It is not always possible for them to know what you are feeling given that you will be in a hostel. And even when you meet or talk for a few hours occasionally, you can always put on an act to make sure everything’s normal. But remember that when the times are difficult, they will always be there for you.
A parent’s life is not easy. For 18 years, you have been the centre of their lives. You were never a “meeting” scheduled on a calendar. They were always there when you wanted. You hurt yourself? They were there to take you to the doctor. You liked that train or plane to play with? They went that extra mile to get it for you. You wanted to read the book? Next day it was at your study table. You were too young to realise what they were giving up to make space for you. And now, as you leave home, think about what’s going on in their lives. There is a void nothing can fill. Even as you sleep in a faraway land, they are awake wondering about you. The words may not be spoken, you may not even be thinking about them, but you are always there in their heart, mind and soul.
So, remember that. If anything goes wrong, talk to them. They have always solved every problem you faced. They always will. You are never alone in this world. Even if everyone else is on the other side, they are on your side. Just their sight, their words will be enough to cheer you up and turn the tide. But remember, you have to tell them. Tell them when you are not feeling good, when you did something you should not have, when you broke a rule, when you crossed a threshold you should not have. They will show you the way ahead.
So, that’s it. The rest is for you – my 18-year-old self – to figure out. Nothing to add beyond the reco to explore and experiment, cultivate good habits and friends, and never forget that even in the hardest of times your parents are always there for you. Go out in the world, live life well, and be the best version of you. The next one month and four years will be unlike any that you have experienced. They are to be celebrated. Life is waiting with her embrace. You have to take the first steps.