Click here for shortcuts to regional language blogs and city-specific events.
This happened a generation ago. I have tried very hard not to repeat what I thought were my parents’ mistakes. But I am sure; I have made plenty of different ones. I just hope that my daughters deal with them in a better way than I did. Sharing the story to remember how we felt in those years.
Mummy, being a teacher, was well-informed about the benefits of CBSE over the archaic state board syllabus and so she changed my school in 11th standard. Yes, she also wanted me to be away from the strong peer pressure, my existing group of friends, and begin again as a focused student.
I did not want to be a focused student. Getting better marks on subjects I didn’t want to study didn’t make much sense anyway. As a teenager who drew on the company of her friends for oxygen, it felt like the end of life to be forced to cope without them.
(My imagination and my emotions were always dramatic or rather melodramatic as per conventional norms. But that’s how I think and feel. Yeah, even now.)
I did try to fit in. I made a few friends, kept up with my studies, tried to do all the right things, but it was tough.
I missed my friends from the last ten years, practically my entire lifetime. I missed the old familiar school where each room, each corner was full of memories of growing together. I hated the new routines, the new uniform, just the feeling of going to this new school every morning.
I also felt harassed. I was the new girl in class. A class half-filled with hormonal boys, nurtured on Bollywood notions which generally told youngsters that girls fall in love with you if you keep irritating them. I couldn’t discuss these nuisances at home. I had learnt that my parents’ way of protecting me was imprisoning me. There would be more questions, more restrictions more tension.
If I had friends to show the Archies greeting cards with the long, complicated proclamations or the torn slips of notebook with ‘shaayari’ sneaked into my bag, I might have seen the romantic or the comic side to things. But I was alone. And I felt hunted and miserable.
I called my friend and poured out all the angst. She agreed that I needed to take some drastic action.
We decided to change the school-back!