Dear ma and pa,
I'm writing my board exams. I thank you both for the sacrifices you have done for me. It isn't a joke to get up at 4 in the morning to wake me up, boil me a glass of milk and force me to study. But you did that without a fuss, mamma.
Pa, you are one in a million. You stopped watching your favourite TV show - "Big Boss" just because I could study in peace. If I was in your place and If I had a child of my own, I would have been very reluctant to do it.
The exams don’t worry me much mamma because I have studied as much as possible. I have memorized physics’ five mark questions, worked out the chemical equations. I also mugged math which you know I hate so much. You know, I miss studying History and Geography. It was really exciting to learn what our ancestors did to free India. It was also fun to learn about the resources that are available in our motherland. Biology is hectic! I have learned so many things. But I am pretty sure that whatever I have learnt in school isn’t going to help me in life.
Mamma and pa, I have learnt so many subjects but never was I ever taught the meaning of love. Isn't love the most powerful force in the universe? It's funny when great parents like you send their kids to school hoping that they become a great human. But at the end of the day, real practical wisdom and life skills are taught at home.
Dear Mamma and Pa, I know you want me to get great marks (a range beyond my capability) and make you proud. I know you wish to own the bragging rights during every khaandan meet, so that you can say, 'Mera beti scored 95%!'
I guess you people love it when you get a chance to show-off about my success in presence of your in-laws and siblings. Teens my age prefer Instagram or FB likes. *rolls eyes*
Dear Mamma and Pa, I know you want me to have the best of everything. I only ask for one thing in return; please do not compare my success to someone else’s. It hurts and it is stupid. Sure, I do want your blessings but comparing marks like a "Trivago Website" is utterly annoying. I am doing my best to get decent marks.
But mamma and pa, if I score less than some random aunt’s child or your cousin's kid, will you be disappointed? Just because my cousins score good marks doesn't mean that they are going to succeed in life.
I know getting good marks will help me to get into a better college. But when someone scores less, it isn’t the end of the world. It is awkward when you read stats that say that a majority of the billionaires are either dropouts or people who chose a degree they wanted to learn.
Mamma, I want to study something different in life. Engineering and Medicine are not the only hope for my future. Choices make a million possibilities. I want to be happy, mamma and pa. I want to live life on my own terms.
Every girl in India lives this standard boring life; she dedicates 99% of her life to her husband. I do not want to do that. Mamma, your gossiping sisters say when girls study well and get good marks, the probability of marrying a successful, hot and a money-minting groom from the United States is a big "YES".
Seriously? Is this what every girl in India asks for? No! WE wish for something different. We want to be different. And to be different, we need to shed our ancient thoughts and venture towards brand new horizons which normal people will hesitate to step in.
Mamma and Pa, if I score low marks, please do not humiliate me. Often when parents do something bad in front of their children, it repeats like a cycle. I'll be subconsciously adopting your habits, vent it out on my own child and break his self-confidence one day. And he will do it to his child and it will go on forever.
Pa, I know you're scared when I talk to boys of my class but know this; my intentions are to be friendly with them and study with them. Just because I am a ladki, I cannot be restricted from talking to them. Just because I talk to guys, it doesn't mean that I am a slut machine. (Pardon my language) When you talk to the opposite sex, you get to know their feelings and above all, you give them the empathy they deserve.
Dear mamma & Pa, I love you both with all my life. I'm writing my board exams. It isn't the end of the world. It is just an exam. This isn't going to decide my future. Only our choices can decide our future. Don't you remember dad, the day we walked back from the beach, after eating ice cream and you said, 'Good Choice and being good is a sure way to succeed.'
I believe that.
There are graduates who become terrorists, some become criminals, some unfortunately become unemployed while a vast majority of the crowd live somebody else’s life. I don’t want to live somebody else’s life, mamma and pa. I want to be different. I wish for the difference. Mamma and pa, this is just a board exam. This isn’t going to decide my future. All I need is your support and trust.
Loving you with all my life,