Today, the Class XII (Class of 2012) were formally bid farewell, by the Class XI students and their teachers. And of course, they bid us, “officially” too 😀
To cut any kind of story short, it was a memorable occasion, for me. The outgoing students, of course would feel it so, and so also the organizers, the Class XI. But for me, ever since my second born passed out in 2006, six years ago, this had to be the best yet, in terms of emotion, cohesion, fun and frolic. Not to mention a few choked up moments, and poignant wet eyes, especially from the boys 🙂
It was a time when teachers, students, both the seniors and juniors shared their experiences of being there at school, recalled fun moments, teased some teachers, remembered all of them fondly, and were blessed abundantly by the faculty. I should also have spoken, I now realize 🙂 Still, it’s never too late to articulate, here, in my space, what I would have.
It’s about dreams. Not the kind that a reverie is made up of, though, for starters it would do very well. The kind that niggle you, creep up on you, and dwell in your subconscious, pushing up now and then to the surface, reminding you, they are there. Dreams to live in. Dreams to use as wings, and fly! Dreams to take along on mundane moments, knowing they are there, to draw you away to a life you know you’d one day, SOME DAY, have. For, as Langston Hughes, the poet put it:
Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die
Life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly!
So this day, I’d urge these young ladies and gentlemen, arrayed out in splendour, handsome and gorgeous young things, to find a dream and chase it, much in the way Rapunzel and Eugene, say, in “Tangled”. (Wasn’t that one lovely movie?). To find that thing that would most complete them, and them, THEM.
I’d have loved to share the story I read about a rich, successful and charitable horse trainer, Monty Roberts, a successful one, who, at a party, shared with the narrator of this story, the tale of an impoverished itinerant horse trainer and his young son, who travelled around, so that the young boy’s schooling was constantly interrupted. At his senior year, the boy was asked to submit an essay on what he wanted to be when he “grew up”. The boy pondered much over it, and finally submitted a beautifully drawn out plan and details of owning a horse ranch, down to finest detail of the house he would build.
When the teacher read it, he returned the paper, with an “F”, in red, and a note to meet him after class. The teacher explained that he had done so, since it was an impractical dream, as the boy’s background did not ensure that he would ever find resources for this dream. He assured the boy that if he were to re-do his paper more realistically, he would re-assign a better grade. The boy went home, read it through, and thought deeply.
The next day he went back to his teacher and told him, “Sir, you can keep the “F”, and I’ll keep my dream”! When the narrator asks Monty as to what became of the boy, Monty smiles, and says, “You’re talking to him”. 🙂 When I read this story first, here, I was charmed no end, and knew this was something I would share with you all, if I were to get the chance.
And, as you dream, you need to remember a valid, necessary truth –
The greatest temptation in life is to confuse dreams with reality
But the greatest defeat in life is to confuse dreams with reality
And if I’d one prayer for you today, it would be that you find your dream, cherish it, and keep it close, and when the time comes, let it fly and chase it all the way till it owns you as much as you do, it, for by then, you would be living it! 🙂
Remember too, “Be careful, what you wish for, for it may come true”
And I’d go on and end on this note of energy and upliftment, with the story on a poster, on the wall of the Vice Principal’s Office 🙂 About the African Jungle. It goes like this:
Each morning, in the African jungle, the deer wake up, knowing that they must run faster than the lion, to be able to end the day happy. Each morning, the Lion knows he must run faster than the weakest deer, so that he can live 🙂 So, no matter whether you are a deer or a lion, start running, at the break of day 😆
God Bless you 🙂 Always!
And while I thought these thoughts, and ran them over as you young people went on stage, performed songs, played games, spoke earnestly sharing of your beautiful selves, I was filled with nostalgia, already. I was missing you already. And I was so not ready for the goodbye part. As one smart young man said, Sreejith, I think, “I’m not sad to be saying goodbye to school, for I’m only leaving the building. In my heart, I’ll carry my friends with me!” Wisdom 🙂
And Jayalakshmi sang a song from about 14 years ago, from Indira (tamil) “Nila kaagiradhu /neram thegiradhu / yaarum rasikavillaye” – so beautifully, so poignantly, she had me there 🙂 Having never spoken to her before, I felt compelled to stop her, as she returned to her place, to thank her, and tell her it was beautiful. 🙂 Later at the end of the function, on our way out she came up to me and said, she wished she had known me and had been in my class. Now, that is perhaps the greatest gift a teacher can be given, and I am blessed to have heard that this day, from a child, a young lady I was speaking to, for the first time 🙂 Thank you, Jayalakshmi!
And then was the ensemble of Class XII students who enthralled us with a medley of songs in English, Hindi, Malayalam and Tamil. The compering was awesome, Avinash, and the musicians beyond compare 🙂 Sujith, Reghunath, Aditya, Prasad, … The singers, Ramanand, Rohit, Raj, Ambareesh … and others. The girls, Kavitha, Aishwarya, Saraswathy, Gayathri, Oormila, Varsha and others… 🙂 The notes were played upon the strings of hearts, with strumming of emotions!!! Applause!
That was the cherry on the icing of the sumptuous fare. And though it ended way beyond the scheduled time, I, for one, was glad to have lingered till the last child was taken home, and be the last of the teachers out of school, at about 7 30 pm. I still have those songs, that performance fresh in my memory.
And that is all the more reason for me to want you to have your dreams chased down, and lived in. Do, please 🙂 That is all this teacher would want from you 🙂
24 January, 2012
#93 (And Yayyyy… I didn’t have to wait for a Sunday 🙂 )