I came from a historically deep-rooted South Indian family, and my parents kept a tight hold on how I worked in the community based on this. Constrictions brought on by my parents’ restrictions on me served as a hindrance to my openness to my world with regard to the ability to achieve any self-discovery. My upbringing was based by my parents on rigid, well-laid plans that would not provide any single reason for my deviation from these programs. Additionally, scolding and stern reminders of caution will be met with a deviation from the layouts. I did not get the privilege to participate in social activities such as watching movies, TV shows or hanging out with friends as this was frowned upon by my parents. They had the view that such pass time activities were a waste of valuable time that would otherwise be put to proper use like studying. To double it up my parents would not give an ear even to me attending school events like fundraisers or getting a job for my benefit.
Although my parents carried me in high regards concerning my performance, this came with a hefty price. I was received constant comparisons to fellow Indians in my vicinity, and my parents would not allow any room for errors when it came to my school performance. Standard engagements like interacting with persons of the opposite sex were observed more as a taboo based on the presumption this would create in the eyes of other Indian families. My parents were very stiff-necked to the point I resorted to lying on the sexual preference of the boys I interacted with to get them off my back. The challenges were not limited to my performance but to basics like dress code which is a complete setback when it came to my efforts to develop my personality. All this was due to the underlying issue which is the manner in which South Indians protect their image, reputation, and status in the society. According to their stereotype mindsets, educational success and the people one is seen hanging around has an immediate consequence on the standing of the parents in the community.
Based on all these, I was fed up, and the pressure was mounting for me to escape from this form of bondage. I was eager to discover and express myself as a person, without any unrealistic boundaries. However, I needed a channel which would serve my interests but at the same time benefit my parents. It is in this dilemma that I discovered tournaments and competitions such as the Olympiad. In the course of such engagements, the possibility of failure was inevitable, but this provided me with the avenue of learning from these errors and most importantly the absence of undue pressure from my parents. I was full of zeal, and I participated in numerous subjects until I landed on one that captured my attention, Anatomy. It was incredible since the subject was appealing to me and it was the gateway for me to the field of medicine and at the same time interested my parents.
This venture opened my mind to the concept of failure and how to circumnavigate and fix my mistakes. My passion in medicine has since grown where I was able to participate in other subject related competitions such as Alabama Brain Bee, where I learned the value of perseverance in all situations. I have continuously participated in the Brain Bee competitions, and failure has been evident on my end but most important has been my never-ending passion for medicine. I am delighted that through these contests I have managed to achieve some self-discovery where I have come to terms with my personality, and furthermore, I have identified where to channel my newly unveiled interests.