Let’s turn back the clock to a simpler time, when we were kids; Curious, Impressionable, ambitious little kids. We all had a dream job and all of us aspired to be something. Some of us wanted to be astronauts, and some wanted to be in the police, while some wanted to be the President or the Prime Minister. While most of us dreamt on and fantasied about growing up and finally being adults, we never knew what it actually meant to be an adult.
Growing up I wanted to be a doctor, just like my Dad. Ever since I can remember, my only dream was to go to a medical school and become a successful doctor. But, it turned out that it wasn’t my destiny. It isn’t that I didn’t try. I tried for 4 years and gave it my all, but my dream stayed a dream!
‘We know a lot less about ourselves than we think we do’ is an old saying, and in hindsight, I can say that it was true in my case. Even though it had felt like all my hopes and ambitions were stripped away, it made me realize something very important. When I came to terms with the fact that I couldn’t get what I’ve always wanted, I had to again ask myself what I really wanted. What do I want to be? After deliberating and pondering much over this for nearly 4 months, I reached a different conclusion: I couldn’t be what I aspired to be because it wasn’t what I was meant to be.
I wish I had asked myself earlier why I wanted to be what I aspired to be! “Everyone fails at who they are supposed to be. The measure of a person, of a hero, is how well they succeed at being who they are.” That’s what Thor’s Mom says (Avengers: Endgame (2019)) and that’s what it is!
My interest in Science as a youngling was (mis)interpreted as having an interest in medicine, and as brown people things go, I was reminded every day that I’m meant to be a doctor. If I get an A in a subject, there would be a chorus of praises leading to ‘You would surely become a doctor! 100%.’ If I do anything well, I would hear, ‘What a good girl! You are going to be a doctor and you are going to make your parents proud!’ Hearing such praises, I would be on the moon, very excited about my future, so full of hopes and dreams. I was repeatedly told that I was meant to be a doctor and I believed it.
When that didn’t happen, I was forced to introspect and self-reflect. I’m glad I did that! I came to realize that my love for science continued and that my passion for knowledge and understanding wasn’t about clearing an exam or a test. That was an eye-opener and it made me take a leap of faith and choose my own future. I couldn’t have been happier!
Studying biotechnology at St Mary’s College has been among the best decisions I have made in life. There hasn’t been a class that I did’t love or enjoy. Learning the actual science behind everything and researching different ways to improve healthcare has been a great opportunity and is immensely fascinating. The exposure, the experience, the adventure in just these 6 months have all been a blessing to me.
So what, you may ask! Well, the moral of the story is really simple: Believe! Believe in yourself, trust your gut and take that leap of faith. Even when you feel that all hope is lost, that nothing can go right, have faith because in the end, there’s nowhere you can be that isn’t where you’re meant to be!