Life Defined by Choice
|Friday, 16 September 2011|
People many a times are awe struck at the sheer abundance of surprises and uncertainty life can spring upon each individual. We grow up dreaming of becoming one and we end up becoming another. Better or worse, we are forced to be contented with what life has to offer us. In the same breath, 'isn't life also about and only about the choices one makes in life?' And the answer would undoubtedly be a 'Yes' and only a 'Yes'. View Aparna's Profile
Born and brought up in a beautiful and one of the remotest villages in Kerala, India, I grew up dreaming of becoming different things at different stages in life, until the time came to make my choice and I made mine. I decided I wanted to become a journalist and my journey to accomplish my dream or goal started hence. Coming from a rural background, I had strong and weak points and it took me considerable time and effort to polish and get myself adept to the changing surroundings and cultures I was thrown into, from time to time during and after secondary education. I learnt the tricks of competing shoulder to shoulder with people from urban backgrounds and in the process raised my own bar of performance and competency. Sooner or later my name started reflecting in the credits of news bulletins and programs thus fulfilling the long nurtured wish of mine. I continued the journey as a news anchor and journalist living my dream but unknowingly nurturing another dream that sprouted during my journalistic career. But the fear of leaving a monthly pay cheque or giving up the recognition I was enjoying held me back from taking my latent dream to fruition. Shedding the inhibitions and fear, one fine morning, I decided to be brave and bold. To leave all the pleasures of the current job and position and make the right choice in life- Of becoming a social Entrepreneur. The journey since then has been a completely different one.
RACE was started with a vision of bridging the gap between the needy and the powerful. I found, there were lakhs of people like me coming from rural backgrounds for whom the urban space was more a cultural shock which they found difficult to get acclimatized to. I could easily relate to their helplessness, and also to their thirst to excel and passion to fulfill their dreams. RACE's mission and vision was beginning to take shape and wings then. We continue our mission of bringing smiles to unknown faces through our communication and cross cultural workshops.
While I am stationed in the city, I continue my trips to the rural villages not in pursuit of the beauty of nature but in pursuit of the dreams those deprived boys and girls held close to their chests but never dared to reveal to anyone for fear of rejection. How can a village boy or girl dream big let alone dream in the first place. Those are luxuries a teenager from a rural background can ill afford. I tell them geographical boundaries within India are meant for many purposes, linguistic differences being just one of them. I convince them that urban- rural classification should not deter them in their yearning to have a healthy, wealthy and educated life. Gone are the days when only the privileged class could dream of attaining stature in society.
Don't take NO for an answer, I keep telling them. Keep questioning. You have all the privileges no matter where you live. You have the right to education. But you must ask for that. You must not be cowed down by hollow threats. You are as intelligent as anyone from the urban towns. You must work hard. At the same time you must learn to imbibe the value system also. Respect for elders, compassion, discipline and selflessness to the society that took care of you are the virtues that would take you to your cherished goals. But dream you must and that alone would catapult you to the citadels of recognition.
Monday morning blues are not for us. Tell yourself you are beginning the beautiful journey of life on this beautiful Monday morning.