Starting a new life is not a moment's decision. It is not easy. Human beings have an inherent fear of the unknown which makes them feel scared of situations we haven't faced before. I was no different, in fact more terrified back then, than I am today of a change. I am however happy I took the step that led to the greatest change in my life. Imagine a small town girl, a town really small, equal to one part of Delhi (like Saket), the one which had no internet connection then, no bookshop, today making it to doing research at a United Nations facility, seems like a dream, fairy tale to be realistic. Everything started with that first step, with taking charge to #StartANewLife.
I have been in love with Science since as long as my memory grows. While children played outdoors all the time and had to be forced to study, I loved solving problems, mathematical in nature or otherwise. Looking at the smaller things under the most basic microscope my school had, repairing or rather trying to understand how my dad's audio cassette player always went bad. However the enthusiasm was short lived. It was so because the very small town had no schools that offered standard 11 Science program. 99.9% students therefore joined commerce. Well many didn't really want to take Science because of the phobia towards the subject. However I couldn't think of my life without it. I was sure I would get out of my house to another city. I was afraid as I had never been alone before. there were horrible stories of things that happened to girls who lived alone in the city and my parents read newspapers, unfortunately and so did I. I had to gain strength and not just pose but be truly confident that they can believe I could do it.
I am basically a self dependent person and a bold child, so my parents didn't doubt on my capability to live alone but for a girl the world is not a place certainly. So it took a whole lot of convincing them. With that in place I moved to a nearest city called Valsad for my studies. Life was very different there. The kids had different priorities and a very different way of dealing with life. They were more casual and confident than me of course and more forward and care free as well. I was amazed, unsure whom to be friends with. I made a lot of mistakes in understanding and recognizing people. Unlike my last school where being in a small town you knew people right from nursery and your families knew each other well enough to direct you whom to mingle with and whom to not, here everyone was a stranger, smarter than me. The city way of life and its code of conduct, to say something and not mean it was so much out of scope for me. I used to cry at nights sometimes upon initial betrayal by friends. I was so lost and it affected my studies and grades. The teachers here dealt in a different way too. They had no concept of teaching the basics, they wanted answers in the text book language and I wondered why not just see the text book then. I still have these issues with the education system in Gujarat. All this made me just frustrated and my longing for old school, older ways and pals I knew would stand by me increased and so did my tears.
The first semester result however was a jolt and I realized I had to learn to deal with everything and not let it get to me. Slowly I distanced myself from people and just observed them. I concentrated on studying and getting good marks. It was difficult but I managed decent marks. being an inquisitive student, the one who asks a lot of questions, made me gel with a few teachers and I could fearlessly share with them my innermost true feelings for everything in this place. They in turn gave me practical advises about how it was just a phase and somewhere I made the place my own.
This continued every two to three years as I went for Bachelors degree program and from there on to another city for Masters and finally the capital for a doctorate. My lab-mates refuse to believe I am a small town girl. I have found myself fall in love with each city and make a place for myself in its heart. I go to them with the pain of leaving the former, only to discover the joys of the later and leave it too teary eyed. I believe Delhi has been the best city I have lived in so far and it has taught me a lot, given me a great exposure and my love for blogging originated here. This blog which has given me a huge alternate identity is all thanks to this city. But this was not the first step. All those sleepless nights, disturbed state of mind and loneliness I fought with when I took the first step out of my home have given me the lessons that help me walk with a stride today. I am happy I took my life in my hands and changed it and could pursue my live for Science till this day.
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