Monday, June 3, 2013

Obsession could be detrimental....

Take a dip into my first hand experience as a student; as an engineer, as an aspirant, as a dreamer. The dreams that had actually positioned us to THAT corner of our lives, there was no chance of looking back. The dreams HAD to yield results, they HAD to!
Imagine the day when a student appears for his annual examination or a job interview; it’s critically important to know his strengths and limitations because once the self-imposed burden of expectation comes in the way, it might OFTEN lead to disastrous results.
The boy named Prithwish was a dazzler in the first half of our Engineering course; he could argue with the professors, attempt the uncanny questions of the paper, lead a laboratory “daunter”, explore the Grand Viva lows, and head the protests but the very prospect of a campus interview posed the toughest of challenges. It was perhaps an onslaught deep within that corroded his intrinsic self; it was a challenge that he formulated on his own….the challenge to surpass his personal BEST.
We could see the transformation; his otherwise jovial appearance would turn completely pale at the mere “sighter” of our placement officer. He used to scamper past the notifications board posted near the placement office just because the “Slot 0” recruiters’ list intensified his palpitation rate. “I’d crack my very first job interview, it’s a promise”; he huffed as the sprint ended close to the Department. The Numero Uno stampede had almost eluded him; the challenge had transformed into an obsession.
On the long walk-down past the placement cell, he’d appear like a dizzy athlete perfectly numb and drained out under the load of self-expectation; under the impression of surmise. We’d sometimes grab hold of him and attempt a reality check- “Dude, you are putting excessive pressure on your shoulders”; I was choleric; “Did you even notice how you look on these pre-recruitment days? Do you think that the companies would actually come in and hire a person who has lost half the battle before it had even begun?” Prithwish looked perplexed. Perhaps the hunt for the No.1 SPOT had blocked off a certain active portion of his brain. His health wasn’t keeping well either. We wouldn’t express.
He would avoid all these questions; mind you, the pulse-meter would read a 130 easily on the D Day; we had collectively deduced the state of his mind by then! It was NOT JUST about the fear of rejection; but the standards that he had set for himself was way too high to handle- the abhorrence of un-fulfillment had a detrimental effect on his physical and mental health. The person who was a tough nut to crack on the Volleyball court couldn’t reach out to the lobbed net-shots within the span of 5 minutes from the whistle- That was truly alarming. Yet, he was a charmer…he had a number of excuses to offer; the ones that included “Form is temporary, class permanent” and blah. Somewhere down the line, he was completely annihilated from inside. He never talked to us on these lines; never shared his dilemma. Perhaps he was TOO focused on the numbers; the numbers that dragged him down.

March 2009 finally arrived; the month that made memories on one hand and smashed dreams with the other…it did bring in showers of wondrous joy coupled with the sprinkles of deathly silence. It was the “Slot 0 syndrome” that had grabbed the Engineering faculty by it’s collar; it exerted it’s deleterious influence on a specific group of students. Prithwish led the pack. Cigars and liquor started to dominate the columns of his aberrant diet chart, sleep had already resigned from it’s job. He did try to annotate this as “A battle to keep the “nerves away”! Sigh!…the battle was lost even before it had begun.
Prithwish was admitted to the AMC Medical College on the 15th of March 2009; he never returned.
A severe Hemorrhagic Stroke knocked out his stumps, ripped his dreams apart…the nascent dreams that had eluded him throughout the 3 years of Engineering.
I had seen Prithwish in the morning; he was literally trembling on his feet as he staggered towards the “PI Room”, claustrophobia was gripping his frayed nerves already. I wanted to stop him; but he was determined to give it a crack. We had exchanged tensed glances before he entered into the interview room; I was WORRIED.
All that came out of the interview room was an un-conscious cocoon; gutted in the burden of his own axioms. He had fainted mid-way through the interview.
“He never told us, you people never...….”- aunty was completely shattered as she clasped on-to the cold, lifeless body. Those were her parting lines.

That's what a Hemorrhagic Stroke is........

That's how the Hemorrhagic Stroke affects....

Yes. We made a deathly mistake….in-spite of being aware of his mental torment, we never managed to soothe him, we never managed to dissolve his notion….we never managed to help him out. We were mere spectators in his journey to cessation. The glimpses of this tragic disaster had revealed themselves right in-front of our eyes….we had ignored them. We had ignored them!
MORAL of the incident (too real to be termed as story): Ignorance (in any form) is pernicious; you gotta respond to the warning signals that life sends could redeem yourself and perhaps your beloved acquaintances.

* P.S. This post has been written as a part of the "The Moral of The Story Is..." initiative brought to us by Colgate in association with Indiblogger’s association to promote healthy living. Please do visit "My Healthy Speak" blog for some much needed tips and information needed to maintain your health. Stay healthy, stay fit!

(This is a true story. The name of the character has been altered after taking consent of the his family and respecting their views.)

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