I was in 7h grade when she first stormed into my life unannounced. Until her arrival I was happy being invisible.  I was happy being the average student. But she saw me differently. My mediocre scores didn’t make sense to her at all.  “I don’t want memorized essays. I want the same sequence of events in your own words. I repeat in your own words”.

I was angry and confused. Why was she being so adamant about my progress?  Why the extra push?  For someone who embraced mediocrity after the extraordinary flourish of my early years the demands of my teacher was unreasonable.

But I was left without a choice and surprisingly the words began to flow.  1 page essays gave me a perfect score. A perfect score in any language paper is an impossible dream but the perfect scores never stopped as my peers gazed at me dumbfounded. “We write pages and yet you walk away with all the honors. What does she see in your answers?  Frankly I had no answers. But I enjoyed the adulation. Perhaps all those early years of being confined to a room with books had finally paid off. 

For the first time I thanked the Almighty for being a specially abled kid. What if I had played around with kids instead of reading? The script would have been different and the love that I had words would never have been discovered. I wasn’t ready for the role transition. I became the go to person for doubts in English.  I was an automatic choice for essay writing competitions. For someone who has never touched Wren and Martin or learnt sentence structure from Grammar text books the whole experience was surreal. I loved being the centre of attraction.  

All it took was a teacher who believed that she could transform the reluctant student into a star. Her parting shot still echoes in my ears. “You are destined for great things”.

My journey should I started then and there but I was stupid enough to let go all my strengths just to fit in and be one among the crowd. It is often said time and tide waits for no man. I was forced to play catch up until my health gave me a rude wake up call for me. I am left with no other choice but to pick up the pen. The flesh is weak but the spirit is yearning for one last shot at redemption. I begin a new journey towards re-discovering hope

I want to hug my teacher and tell her that I am taking the first step towards fulfilling the aspirations she had for me. I want to hear that familiar tone wishing me good luck. Maybe when I my turn comes to take my place in the podium she will be there in the audience clapping for me.