It has been three years since that eventful day and in spite of everything that happened in between,it still lingers fresh in memory.And the journey in between,well it has been nothing short of mind-boggling.I remember myself being all excited,it was our orientation after all,our first day in the eleventh.But all that aside,the major reason for the excitement was definitely the presence of the fairer sex for the first time in our batch,particularly ‘a’ member of the fairer sex.And this excitement triggered of a chain of events that led to me being where I actually am today.It all started as any casual teenage infatuation,but it suddenly turned into a full blown obsession.It began with me only wishing for a great friendship with her,but as that gradually began to happen,the heart craved for more.And suddenly it was all out of control.I did nothing except think about her the entire day and she just played along and looking back I guess she derived a certain amount of sadistic pleasure out of it.She meant the world to me at that time,and I was her little toy(no pun intended).In all of this though,I was forgetting a major aspect of a person’s life in the eleventh.

As I grew closer to her,I forgot that I had taken up Science and I needed to bust my hump studying,to say the least.I started getting excited about the prospect of “us” together.And at the end of the year,I paid severely for it.I failed in every subject except English and E.V.S. in the final term,and the reason for and circumstances under which I was promoted remain a mystery for me till this day.Anyway,the day we got our papers,despite the horrifying results,happens to be the best day of my life till date.It was the day I realized how much my parents love me and who my true friends really are.It didn’t take me even a minute to realize how I was being used in my friendship with this girl.The worst part is that I wasn’t being used financially,she had turned me into a hopeless romantic,an emotional fool.I realized within minutes that things had to be set right.It was the day I decided that the only thing that could salvage the situation was a seat in I.I.T.And thus I shifted route,changed my destination.I learnt more about myself and life in general in that one day than what I had learnt in 17 years of prior existence.

The first change was the fact that my studies,from figuring nowhere on my list of priorities,were now top priority.I infact began to enjoy the hard work.Even now after all the time for that hard work is over,I get a thrill out of solving problems in Maths and Physics(I know this is nerdy but I can’t help it).Another change was the fact that I no longer looked at other people for approval.I found out that  peer pressure was something that could be easily avoided if one was focussed about something.Everything suddenly started going right,I started achieving those short term goals I had set and as the time approached my ultimate goal,that of going to I.I.T seemed almost certain.But then came the biggest shock of my life.The results were declared,but despite clearing the exam,I got a rank which couldn’t get me a seat decent enough in an I.I.T.And then I made what is perhaps the biggest decision of my life till date and I guess it is going to remain so for some time to come.

I decided to drop a year,inspite of good performances in other exams and the opinions of various judgemental fools.I started with a renewed vigour,forgot about every dissapointment and began working hard once again.This time the stakes were higher.I was aiming for a rank within the top hundred.I worked as hard as I could,toiling for long hours to achieve that magical two digit rank.And once again things started falling into place.With about a month left for “the day”,it only seemed logical with my prepration and performances that a two digit rank was there for the taking.If I just kept my head.And that was a big “IF”.

As the exam approached,various negative thoughts entered my mind.I began doubting myself and I don’t even know why.I did everything I could to just do my job and not worry about the exam,and even though it was  water under the bridge a week prior to the exam, just a couple of days before the exam those ghosts returned to haunt me.And now,lets just say that a two digit rank is as likely as India winning the next Football World Cup.

In all of this,I learnt one thing.That nothing in life is,nothing at all, so important that it is worth being given more thought than what one gives it while they are working towards achieving it.Wanting something so badly that we value it more than our own life is a mistake many of us make.I made that mistake thrice in three years and I learnt that it is a trait akin to self-destruction.

So,here I am today,finally,after all those lessons I have learnt.And I am pretty sure that I am much more mature than that super-excited boy three years back.But looking back I have got no regrets about anything in these last three years,not even the things I did back in the eleventh.In fact I am glad I did everything I did!