“Mumma, when I receive the award, should I walk up the stage from the left or from the right? Both side has stairs.” Asked a very enthusiastic five-year-old girl dressed as a dhoban (washerwoman).
“Any side, beta”, reassured the mother, looking tensed.
She got a call from her husband. “How Is she doing? Competition over?” asked the father on the other line.
“Contest is over. She did well. But I am worried because she is so confident she will win! She is asking me which stairs she should go up from! I hope she wins something. She will be too disappointed otherwise!”
“It is okay. I have bought her that doll set anyway. If she wins, it is her prize. If she does not, it will cheer her up.”
Few minutes later, the little girl walked up from the right side to win the first prize award in the fancy competition. Her mother clapped proudly, relieved.
It has been 25 years since then. But the scene was pretty similar this Saturday at the Orange Flower Awards for which the girl who is now a grown-up woman had traveled with her mother. The woman’s father was texting, this time on the family whatsapp group.
“Any updates? Keeping fingers crossed.” The father texted with a folded hands emoticon.
“Programme has started.” replied the mother.
“Keep us updated.”
The grown up woman was sitting with two of her blogger friends. Her mother was sitting behind her with her friend’s mother (who is also a blogger). Her mother was initially sitting on the aisle seat. But as more crowd poured in, she had to move in. Now she was all the way in the corner.
If I win, she will not be able to take any decent pictures from that corner…. The woman thought to herself.
She turned around to look at her mother. She wanted to ask her to get up and click a picture in case she did win.
But she was not that presumptuous five-year-old anymore!! The little girl who was so confident of herself was now a grown-up woman. A woman who was afraid she will jinx it if she says something. A woman who is scared of good things. A woman who feels that if something nice happens to her, something bad will happen to balance it out. A woman who struggles to fight off her inner demons and negative thoughts.
The woman won. The father was updated on whatsapp. He updated his entire contact book. Even people who do not know his daughter writes. The mother managed to take a video from her corner seat. Without any sound though! She had lowered her phone’s volume for the event (something she regrets) because in her own words, ‘Tumhare baare mein kitna achcha bola tha , woh record nahi hua.”
The woman was very happy. She will try to write better. But most importantly, she will try her best to be that free-spirited little girl again.
I won three awards this year. But this post is not just about me. I would like to dedicate this post to everyone reading this, please pursue your dreams. Don’t be afraid. Don’t think about 100 things that will stop you. Don’t expect any success. Just do it! When you do something you like, everything falls in place.
© 2017, Tanvi Sinha. All rights reserved.