Today I found this rugged rusty old paper I thought I had kept safe. I can’t believe I found it in a bag full of useless junk. I definitely thought I had it safe in my treasure chest. Yes, I kind of have a treasure chest — not one but a couple! Here is the front side of the paper;
It is an eleven year old paper. And I remember how much it meant to me back then. As soon as I received it, I knew it had to go in my treasure chest. Even after so many years, having gone through so many changes, having become a rugged rusty old version of that young boy, these words are still as new, as true and as constant as they will ever be. There is only one thing that is better than the picture above and it’s the back side of the paper;
In case it’s not clear, let me quote what’s written;
Thank you. Dearest Ronak, Hard working, quiet, Cricket player for love of X B, disciplined, Sincere, good nature, friendly, co-operative, intelligent, Helpful. God Bless, Sr. Bhavna.
Of all the ten schools that I have attended, Sister Bhavna has been my favorite teacher. My family will tell you how fierce an advocate I am of providing good education to children and when I say “good”, I don’t mean a private or a luxurious expensive school with fancy campus and endless syllabus. What I mean is, to give them the company of people who cherish them for who they are, who teach them to be kind by being kind themselves and who teach them to work for the good of humanity and our planet.
I had always felt dejected and confused elsewhere. I had always felt I had to improve because I wasn’t good enough. The irony is, the moment I flushed that feeling out of my system and accepted myself for who I was, the improvements came. Many of the things that seem inherent in me today are results of the decisions I made and the experiences I had eleven years ago. It was eleven years ago that I penned my first words. I wrote my very first poem in that year. I never knew I had a creative side. I dressed up and acted in not one but three plays — stage fear has never bugged me after that. If somebody asked, I could finally tell what my favorite subjects were — Mathematics, Science and English. I almost gave a speech. I made a lifelong friend there. I participated in sports and I did yoga. I stretched myself to see how far I could go and what my limits were. In that one year, I made myself.
I had never felt more loved and cared for in any of the schools before. I never wanted to miss a day. In fact, most days I was the first to reach the school. When the year ended, I missed some people. That was the first time I had missed anyone who wasn’t family, it was an alien feeling to me. I remember my classmates, oh how kind they were! I respected them all, I looked up to them. I felt like I had so much to learn from them because they had been there longer than I had been. So I thought they must have learned so much more. A stick does nothing to help bring out a child’s shtick. Love does!
Love and accept people especially children for what they are and they’ll show you their best side. Don’t we all use this cliché, “Happiness comes from within.” Let them be who they are and no matter what happens in their life, no matter what decisions they take, they’ll find a way to be happy.
I’m glad this paper found its way out of that treasure chest or else I would never have found this for years to come. I guess I need to open the treasure chests more often.