Glass half full

What moves us on? What leaves us spellbound and then drives us in mysterious ways? What is that one experience that defies all other? Most of us have few moments of realization which define the direction and energy with which we lead our life.

As an undergrad student I used to casually volunteer with an organization where I used to go to a government school to aid a section of grade third students. First day at the school left me perturbed, the school was falling short of basic infrastructure and the students hailed from poor families. When the thought of comparison of their childhood to mine entered my mind it left a sinking feeling. My second visit and all my visits thereafter however left me hopeful and optimistic about the future. Even though children lacked in resources and necessities, they were brimming with life and spirit. School for them was not like how it was for us, they never cribbed about having to wear uniforms and attend classes. And surprisingly their parents never missed any parent-teacher meetings. They were aware and thankful that their children have an opportunity that they never had.


Owing the fact that the kids belonged to the families of rickshaw pullers, rag pickers and alike and had no or minimal idea of the world and opportunities beyond that, we organized them to personally meet professionals like doctors, scientists and social workers. Once we called a school friend of mine who was pursuing M.B.B.S, he came and talked to kids about his school years, his gap year, entrances, life in medical college and all. A kid asked if heart really look like what they show in the movies (lol). He made them hear their heart beats. We had many other sessions like these. Many students now wish to emulate the people they met. If even handfuls are successful in doing so, I would consider it a big achievement.
The experience with them showed me to see the glass half full. They opened me to a world of hope and opportunities.

Feel the joy I have felt, the joy that never deserts me even in the darkest hour. Give them wings and they will bring the sky to you. Try for yourself, do a tiny deed if nothing else, give your old books to those who would treasure it, teach a kid whose life may as well depend on it. For a country like our childhood is the best investment. In economics we call it demographic dividend, you may call it bliss.

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