Was it an eye-opener, or was it a mirror, was it about self awareness or self empowerment , was it about learning how to be a teacher or about how to be a human being. Lying under the stars I thought to myself…. aren’t we just like these stars, that shine because of the light within. Just like each star needs the support of the clouds , the city lights to be low, the pollution levels to be low for it to be visible, the IAAT faculty is the support and the space to us today. The challenge is to find the light within regardless of this “space” and support. We need to overcome our fears whether it is a fear of heights or fear of being alone or fear of fire or simply the fear to express openly. I can now appreciate how critical it is to create that space for ourselves , for other, and for every child to express freely. We need to step out of our comfort zones aka our nice comfy beds and step into the world with kids that are easy to work with and kids that are not so easy to work with , aka into our sleeping bags in the harsh cold climate. Every activity seemed strange to be in a camp for being a teacher, but in hind sight it was highly appropriate. It was analogous to the barriers that we need to surpass.
The trip has personally taught me many many things some that I can articulate, some that I can only feel. I understand now that that life is a journey and it is a lot to do with how we live it and not what we accomplish in it. I thought I had accomplished a lot already and here I was who barely knew myself. I understand that I have to learn to be patient, not just wait for people to complete their turn but also to wait for people to complete their thoughts – to break barriers and not fear judgement – to walk on fire night after night without complaining or playing victim, rather take it in my own stride and enjoy every moment of it – to take charge of situations and make the bridge when I know that that is the call of the hour , that it is the task that I am committed to – to not fear failures and rappel down that rock even when there are eyes watching me, even when there is tremendous peer pressure – to not over commit and reach out for help when needed or to simply look at the starry night and feel gratitude .
The real challenge would be to inculcate all these and go from understanding these to making them habits, To think BEFORE every thought, to step carefully before every walk , to be awake every morning , to stop before a start and to start after every stop. To change a habit needs patience and we would be faced with more failures than successes. I have already failed a few times since the trip but again it is the 7km long trek up and down , I now have the courage to promise myself to try again. I will keep trying , there is nothing perfect, nothing fully complete, nothing all accomplished, there is always more to do, more to accomplish , more that I can try, more that the world needs, much much more that my country needs , a lot more that that one child needs who is left behind and I will keep trying.
– Sunayna Uberoy, Resident- PGDLT 2015-2016