And the day dawned. He stood before me, 6’ tall with a twinkle in his black gleaming eyes. That very moment it struck me that his journey has started. Or was it that it already had started and I seemed to have taken a note of it only at this station? May be yes…It really had started sixteen years ago for him, my better half and me!
Today as he is getting felicitated in his school for excellent performance in board exam, my chest is swelled with pride! As I await the father son duo to return from the felicitation ceremony, I took cover of my blog to enjoy the shower of emotions that is pouring in and around but exclusively for me… (School had requested presence of one parent with every meritorious child)
I remember the day when we decided to shift our camp to foreign land when this boy was only two and half. Right from his birth till that time, he had known only two languages… one our mother tongue, Marathi and the other the language of love. Being born to a working set of parents, he started speaking only around the age of two! We were poised to enter a land where English would be the primary language of communication and Hindi to a very little extent. Then began his journey to learn the new language out of blue. Right from dawn to dusk, we made it a point to converse in English with the little boy. To begin with he was clueless as to what was happening and so were we as to whether he was able to comprehend anything?
Surprisingly he picked up the language quickly, much to our astonishment. And now, he is my “Thesaurus” to go to when it comes to certain expressions and use of apt words while writing my posts. He doubles up as my first editor and critique!
Seven years into the foreign country, the calls of motherland became prominent. We shifted our camp back. Another set of challenges awaited him. Here was a 4th standard boy, who would eat, drink, sleep, walk, talk, and dream as well, only in English. Whether in school or society where we lived, he was ridiculed for communicating in English. He knew a very little of Marathi as it was limited to conversing only with his parents till then. We were now in the land of Marathi speaking pundits! He took few months to think in English and then respond in Marathi. For he wanted to be one of them and not be side-lined. He struggled and tried his level best to absorb the nuisances of the language.
Did he ever complain? Never! It made him adoptive and receptive to cultural diversity and mindsets of people around him. It made him more open to accepting the things as they are and not as how he wanted them to be. Here, I suppose, the seeds, of becoming a good human being were sown in the receptive and fertile soil of his soul. I am sure he will reap a rich and hearty harvest in future!
Three years down the line after settling in India, we were on verge of shifting the base again. This time the boy was in 7th. He had his world settled, pretty well, around him. Before deciding on shifting the base, we checked with the boy for his readiness. To our surprise, he gave us an answer that is still so fresh and clear in my mind… “Shifting to a new place? Mumbai? I have one good experience of shifting and so I am ready. Let’s see what Mumbai has for us!”
The positivity of his thoughts made our process of settling in metro city a pleasurable journey! He being enthusiastic and open to changes made our daughter who is younger to him, think of this change as an adventure. Could we have asked for more?
Adjusting to new cosmopolitan environment and fast pace of the metro city, making new friends and settling down did not take much longer for this young chap. He took to it as a fish in water! For now, he has learnt that the life is a journey and that he enjoys the ride!
Today as he’s getting felicitated for his academic excellence, I the proud mother wish to appreciate the boy for all the soft skills he had acquired, patience, positivity and resilience he had shown in the journey of sixteen years!
PS: On their return, the father was delighted to share that he had the tastiest ever refreshment of his life, at school, that was proudly earned by his son!