There’s a reason that (I believe) only I can fathom why life and file are phonetic palindromes. I’ve been sick for the majority of my life, my history inscribed in my medical files.
Asthma. Exams. Migraines. Internships. PCOD. Jobs. Borderline Anemia. Volunteering. Troubled Stomach. Gravitate towards Writing.
People need a work-life balance. As you can see above, I yearn for a life-file balance.
But, through it all, I had words. I read some, and I wrote little. My life chiseled on files; I stayed envious of my files. I knew my file of achievements could never compete with my files of medical history.
CT-Scans triumph over cities changed, and that’s saying a lot (Army kid and all).
So, when the pandemic hit, I was conflicted.
All massive, massive hurdles aside, I believed it to be a leveling ground. My college attendance had been dismal, my attempts at volunteering ambitious, and I was either laughed out or phased out (eventually) of all jobs that I undertook.
So, I overcompensated.
I attended every virtual class. I wrote a 50-page paper for a Literature exam, which, ironically, was the reason I missed out on a 9.85 CGPA. Finally, following an entire semester of regimented attendance, I learned a lot.
I learned that CGPA would never measure up to practical work, no matter the contents of your study. I realized that I have to give everything I have, and every day I have, the maximum effort that is foreseeable. I learned that words would change the world.
It was never about your shortcomings. It was never about the files. It’s never about the reasons and the excuses.
While I rued about my problems and hailed the lockdown, millions of people suffered, wishing they were in my place. And that’s the learning.
While half the planet worries about what they are going to eat, the other half worries about whether they will be able to eat. The stories that we tell, the ones we wish to chronicle, and ones that can change the world, are just one word away.
The difference between the “World” and “Word” is one letter. And that letter stands for learning.
We live and learn, or we learn and live.
I choose the latter, always.