As a student I was always into mid-range grades compared to my fellow class mates and close friends. At times my combined marks of 3 subject could not even match the topper in the class.
I was more inclined to listening cricket commentary even during class time with a hidden microphone in those days, half of the time I forgot to even note down important homework details from blackboard. Once was caught with the Radio and I remember one of my teacher making me kneel down for one full day (but I had radio on even during punishment).
All this continued till the time I passed school. I used to hate few of my teachers because they used to punish me, call my parents and I at times thought they are my biggest enemies. Few pardoned me from punishment because I was a good runner and used to fetch Samosas from canteen during recess for them.
I guess I am the only student in my school who was punished during a picnic to a Zoo. Only respite was that I was not caged. My mistake was that I was jumping on bus seat with shoes on. More than the Monkeys combined in the Zoo.
Time passed and I was doing my graduation, college life was filled with pep. It was more of music and movies and again I used to see monsters in a teacher (oops ‘lecturer’).
Post-graduation, it was career crisis, I was in real time world. That was the time when I did not have a teacher who could scold me or punish me for doing anything wrong. Because I was the decision maker. This was time where my errors were double as compared to the good deeds.
There was a point in life where I had to make an important call, to decide what is next in life , to be an entrepreneur or work for some other organization where again there would be strict boss or a teacher , I decided to be on my own.
When I decided to be my own slowly I had a team and I realized I am also behaving like my teacher , assigning jobs , asking them for results and so on and scolding them too.
This is when realization dawned on how difficult it is to be on the paddle and press the throttle when the road is really bumpy.
As I recalled my school days I realized that my teachers whom I used to hate were actually helping me to perform, make me ready for the day when I would be pressing the throttle on terrains that are not going to be smooth.
I went deep into my memory lane, recalled things that my teachers used to say during class; all I could remember were words of wisdom and most important of those were Punctuality, Discipline, Cleanliness, respect for elders, keeping things arranged, noting down important messages or instructions, always looking for the right time, right place and right people to make decisions.
It made me very sad that I never adhered to what my teachers told me to do, but I said to myself that why can’t I always be like a student – fine I could not follow them when I was in school, but in outer world in today’s time I need to listen to them, what if I am not in school but practically I am still a student who is eager to learn.
That day, that moment, I realized one thing. Even though I was not good in grades, but I always lent an ear to what my teachers always said. I took it to be positive that I was a listener. That helped me to assimilate all my thoughts together and evaluate myself where I am.
Today I still preach those same thoughts and talks which my teacher gave, it helps me at every important juncture of my life.
Now it’s not the grade which bothers me, I am happy that more than grades I had my ears open for my teachers.Contributed on Teachers Day by Mubarak Hussain, Mumbai