A life is full of race. We are into race in all the fields; be at studies, work, buying materialist comfort and some more. We are in the race knowing the destiny and sometimes without, and sometimes in a race just to fulfil our loved ones’ dreams or to make someone happy without knowing what next. Living a life to make our people happy , rather we are scared about society who change our image!
In such race, after completing my bachelorate, joined MNC. I was about to relax taking a break to race of studies, another target was ready for me; pursuing master degree! Even completed that and made my mind that let me put full stop there and concentrate exclusively on work. But; there comes another target which is my mom’s dream to see me as an IAS officer – which is really more elusive target. I took this challenge also, considering its one of my dream too and hence started putting double the effort to fulfill my mother’s dream!!
After lot of googling and enquiry decided on the institution where I could get flexibility of classes as don’t want to quit the job. This is the dream which demands lot of hard work and time along with cognitive skills. This is ‘Awfully The Toughest’ destiny I had chosen in my life. One should also need supportive family and friends – I am lucky in this.
My new race started. Daily routine got disturbed. Each day is mentally challenging. Lazy bug changed to early riser. Attending early hours classes and then run to office and then back to class in the late evening, go back home, cook and daily household chores and then working on assignments and daily catch up reads to understand the session attended and then to bed!! Can you imagine my daily hectic routine!!! And institute is our world over the week end!! God only knows how I was managing those days!!
Along with routine tasks, it demands to read news paper to be upto date on current affairs. That is where I started reading news paper in my life. This would gallop around two hours to read and make a point. I need to accommodate this two hours in those hectic routine!!! One can really think on importance of each (mili)second.
First day class pointed out where I stand! How much low knowledge I have!! All my distinction went vain! Feeling of doomed!! Started picking up the things in later days, got very good bunch of study circle, good guidance; slowly feeling good about myself. Daily strain and efforts were yielding qualitative fruit. Being Engineer, having background of Maths and science only, complete unaware of so many aspects. Aspiration of clearing UPSC exam made me to understand the value of time, value of society, value of our constitution, values of laws, value of casting our vote (I casted my first vote after this realisation).
Everything was going smoothly till then and A day came where I need to travel to onsite on official work for couple of months. Just three months classes were completed, was clueless to take decision. Ball was in my court! After all calculation and talking to institute professor, found out the solution. Institute had facilitated us to feel like its as our own home and facilitators as our own members. They assured and promised to arrange all the missing session once I am back to India. I packed all to fly to onsite, it was my second trip to same place and now I am quite confident to travel alone to far distant place. My checkin baggage had more than 15Kgs of books, even laptop bag had books. I was completely focused on this UPSC mission!!
First day at onsite , short notice meeting was scheduled. No clue as on what it was, i joined the bridge. Team were discussing on some issue and sentences on books were floating front of my eyes, world wars were haunting me, equations were hitting my mind, nothing was going to my mind, was struggling to focus on two items now! Then, I decided to kick out the reading mission and finish off travel concern and set back again once back to India. Those four months were like a lightyears! I had bought many more things in these four months to take back to home which added extra weight to baggage. One of friend helped taking my books weight along with her courier facility. Those return travel was fun filled as we had group of colleagues coming back altogether 🙂
Again, my daily routine set back. Daily and week end classes, extra missed sessions, regressive repetitive mock tests, assignments, presentation, discussion. I was completely occupied. Interest in Geography has increased tremendously now, able to co-relate to any of the topic now, able to justify on the topics given, can stand out even in intellectual crowd now. Feel elated. We were getting completely ready to face the battle of examination. Sharpen our weapons. This exams demands to know everything under the sun, still there is trick to make ourself perfect on set of items to crack it.
All set, still incompleteness surrounded me. Examination day arrived. Ticked the answers being too cautious as negative marks applies. Felt paper was too easy that year and even everyone were talking same. So many talks were floating in the air; papers were easy, cut off will be high and so on. Answers were out after couple of days by some of the online sites which is 99% correct (1% always lies with government, the keys made by them are final one!). Me and my husband sat front of computer filling the answers keys on those website to check my marks, I closed my eyes when he clicked submit button, heart was beating fast; Click!!!! numbers out!! It was very good total I had got at my first attempt, my professor was positive about my score as it was 20+ than last year cut off. I was in the air, become too much focussed now to prepare for next level, I Quit my job and took this as very serious. Exactly three days after I quit job, actual result was announced which we were expecting bit later. I was not cleared! 😦 Those lines came across my mind as what my Institution professor usually say; ‘This exam need LEG to crack; i.e LUCK, EFFORT and Guidance. You would lose if anyone is also not with you!‘ Probably ‘L’ was not with me and little more EFFORT was required from my side also.
Cut off was very high that year. Tough it was a year of nightmare, it has given immense knowledge to me. I still has bitter feeling that I lost in short of mere 8 marks!!