The way I interpreted this quote when I first encountered it, is different from my perception of it now.



By the time I was fifteen, I thought I had life all figured out. I had learnt everything I needed to and I knew how to differentiate right from wrong. Now that I am twenty-three years old and I know nothing. Each day becomes a testimony to how wrong I was. 

Here are some of the things I have unlearnt :-

1. Rich people are hard workers and poor people are lazy:


I think this thought is ingrained in most of us. Growing up I have seen many people work so hard that they have little time for themselves to live, but only to fail in the end. Sometimes there is no lesson to be learnt. Sometimes the only thing you’ll achieve is the acceptance that you did everything in your power to change your life; and you are worthy of awe and appreciation nevertheless. To be rich you have to be very lucky, and something as arbitrary as luck should never be a measure of a person’s worth.

2. Science stream is for smart kids: 

Image by Mark Mags from Pixabay 

Growing up I was told I was a smart kid, I did well in school, and I did great in my 10th so naturally I took science and coaching for JEE. How hard could it be for a smart girl like me? If you cannot study something you dislike for at least three hours, and you lack discipline and hard work, maybe think twice before taking up Science. Those two years were extremely difficult for me. It destroyed my confidence and self esteem. Failing JEE twice led me to depression. I saw myself as a loser and remarks by others about this failure of mine did not help.

So if you ever make these tough choices, please do not be too hard on yourself. I promise it gets better and you’ll get great things in life eventually. You are too young to lose hope in yourself, please believe me.

3. Homosexuality is just rebellion against society: 

I was taught that they were different; and the nicest way people put it was that they were rebels who wanted attention. Lucky for me, while browsing YouTube one day, I stumbled across an extremely funny gay couple. Watching them, became my favourite escape from my dreadful JEE coaching life. I saw how cute their love was, and I knew someday I’d like that for myself too. I realized that they were no different from me, only more oppressed and ostracized. They are just people looking for love and acceptance like the most of us, what’s so wrong about that? I’ll never understand people who want to dictate how a person should live their lives.  

4. Looks are important in relationships: 

Looks are only the cover, once you get to know that beautiful basketball player you’ve had your eyes on for a while, you’ll see how cocky and self obsessed they are, and how they could never love you right. That’s how that beautiful person could no longer be attractive to me. 

Looks maybe important for the initial attraction but so many people have different preferences that it’s hardly a matter of worrying. Dating a person you can’t imagine being friends with isn’t going to last. 

5. Relationships and friendships are waste of time: 

I was always asked to focus on my studies the most, going out with my friends wasn’t prohibited but was looked down upon. It took me a while to learn how to make friends. I have a handful of friends who have given me so much joy and have saved my skin so many times; I wouldn’t trade them for the world. Just because certain people may not be in your life permanently doesn’t diminish their importance. I love each one of my friends dearly, even though some of them I have outgrown because with each of them I have beautiful memories and that is my precious jewels from them.

As far as relationships go, personally, I am dating someone whom I can truly call my best friend. They’ve helped me grow a lot. With them I talk for hours about anything trivial and serious, they listen to even my silliest stories and I love listening to them.


I am twenty-three now and the only thing I know about being good is that: As long as you are not doing anything to harm others, and are not sitting idly when others are being harmed, "YOU ARE A GOOD PERSON" and I respect you and love that you exist.

- Deena Bhattacharjee 

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