My 31 year old life has hurled countless challenges on my way. But, I have stood the test at every step. It wasn’t that easy, I must say. But, it could have been way tougher, had I not met a few special people at various junctions of this journey called ‘life’.
I am still in touch with a few of them, while others have gone – some are busy in their life in some corner of this world, while others have left this world forever.
I have thanked them many times for the good they did to me, and for the help they extended to make difficult times easy for me. Yet, I feel still indebted and wish to thank them again, for what I am and where I am today.
To start with, it’s my mother. She is a super mom for me and my sisters. After the tragic separation from dad, she brought us up with great care and love, singlehandedly. She managed to give us the best of everything that she could.
In times of financial crisis, when there was no food at home, she sold off her priced possessions to feed us. I saw her crying in isolation, but she always appeared before us with a dimpled smile on her face.
She gave us the freedom to think, to decide, to choose and to tread on the path that we thought was right. She taught us to become independent, in mind and heart.
Schooling and college education would have been impossible, if we didn’t have such marvelous mamas (maternal uncles). They earn an average monthly salary of Rs 5000 per month today, they earned lesser when we were in school. But, they did all they could to pay our school fees.
Thankfully, we studied in a government college – Cotton College in Guwahati. Here, there was no monthly fees required. It was just an annual fee that was to be paid. That too was a small sum of money.
When we fared well in exams, my mother’s uncle and aunt (my nana & nani) presented us with cheques as gifts. I still can’t forget the joy of receiving a cheque of Rs 3001 from them. It was not less than a Bharat Ratna for us.
Throughout the year, me and my sister competed to claim the coveted honour. Interestingly, this was not because we could buy dresses or other things with that money, but because we could pay our annual fees comfortably. Nana & nani made that part of our student life so much happy and stress-free.
We started giving tuitions to kids since we started college. My sister and me earned Rs 600 each. So, our family income was now of Rs 1200! I still remember, being a music lover, I bought an audio cassette of the film “Ijaazat”, with my first earning. It cost me Rs 28. 🙂
Our life in Cotton College was so much fun with a couple of wonderful buddies – Angana, Shekhar, Starson and Raktim. These friends made our life so beautiful. In every crisis – emotional & financial – they stood with us, helped us and pulled us out of it.
I still remember, my mother’s life saving medicine – the inhaler that she took for asthma – exhausted one fine day. We didn’t have money to buy it as it was the last few days of the month and the tuition fees were not in. It was then when Shekhar borrowed us Rs 200. What a happy moment it was! We could at least buy mumma’s medicine then!
There are countless such moments when these friends – our angels – helped us out in grim crisis. If I start listing them, I would have to spend all my life for that, I guess.
In the year 2007, when I came to Delhi and joined the English news channel NewsX’s online team, I felt like “no one” in the crowd of experienced journalists. Being from a completely different industry, journalism was not my cup of tea! But, the online team showed absolute trust in me.
My boss, Mr Ajatshatru Singh, rested all his confidence in me and taught me what web writing is. He taught me what blogging is! My colleagues and dear friends, Sitansu Mahapatra and Rohit Bhardwaj, taught me the technicalities involved in web writing.
They helped me grow professionally. I emerged as a good web writer, because of their trust in me.
A year later, when I interviewed actors Nandita Das and Sharmila Tagore for the website, I realised what I have achieved with the help of my lovely colleagues. They taught me to trust and be patient with those who need my help and guidance.
In my personal life, my twin sister has been a pillar of support to me. 🙂 🙂 She is there all the time to help me out, in times of emotional crisis. My friend Angana, despite being away from me, still understands from my voice if something disturbs me. Would I get a better friendship than this?
Today, I wish to thank you all, for being there with me, for showing confidence in me and giving me so much of your love.