The Turning Point
The Turning Point
Ramesh always wanted to be a writer. Studying engineering was never his passion, but a compulsion. His dad wanted him to become a computer engineer, work for a multinational company, get married and settle down. Basically, the template dream every father has for his son. So he succumbed to his father's wishes and started studying for JEE. He cracked a decent rank in the exam and got admitted to an IIT. He made his father very happy. His father would boast about his son's IITian tag in every interaction he had with people. Ramesh had become an IITian.....
Three years, six semesters and ten backlogs later, Ramesh had concluded that he wasn't fit to be an engineer. The upcoming campus placements didn't interest him whatsoever. He had decided to pursue writing as a full-time career. "But I haven't written anything in the last three years. Maybe it's not my thing anymore" was the thought that plagued his mind every time he took his laptop to write. "People will judge me for my content. I need to learn more about writing before I actually start writing" was the excuse he gave himself whenever he was faced with the thought of writing something. His passion had become a hindrance to him. He skipped all writing events in his college, didn't care about joining the college's literary committee and told no one of his so-called "passion".
Looking at his sixth-semester mark sheet, Ramesh decided that engineering wasn't his cup of tea. He realized that things couldn't keep going the same way. He decided to pursue his lifelong dream of writing. The thought of writing a masterpiece sent a tingling sensation down his spine. His mind started playing a visual montage of all the glory his writing would bring him. "Once I start writing, I'll become a stud here. The college stud". As his imaginary movie progressed, he started seeing those lucrative publishing deals, interviews, book launches, celebrity interactions, movie deals.....
Stimulated and motivated to the core, Ramesh switched on his laptop. He opened a blank word document. "A blank canvas that I'll fill with my dreams", he thought to himself. An hour passed. His canvas was still blank. He had a great idea but he felt he lacked the skills needed to execute it. Another hour passed and then another one. The net result of typing and backspacing was a blank page. Ramesh's dream felt like a dilapidated building, collapsing right in front of his eyes. He decided to give up the thought. Maybe he wasn't a writer after all. He thought of going for a break and then start studying for his placement rounds. Maybe his dad was right he thought. "But he isn't, I know I was born to be a writer".
Four hours later, Ramesh decided to relinquish every bit of reluctance he had. He started typing. But this time it was different. The net result of writing and backspacing was a beautiful story. A story about love. A story about passion. A story that found its place in his college magazine. He received lots of accolades. He was praised by everyone, his friends, his seniors, his professors and even his principal. He felt a sense of belonging now. He realized that after all, he had potential. He could chase his passion and become the captain of his destiny. He started writing more and more often. Months passed. His blog was becoming a rage in the city. People would read his articles with great interest, captivated by his words. Some more time went by and his words found a spot in one of the most widely read newspaper in the state. His dad was proud of him. The montage he had seen in his hostel room years ago felt like a reality on that dais where he was attending a press conference to announce his newly signed book deal. The success, the fame, the glory, everything he had visualized in his hostel room that night was manifesting right in front of his eyes. He had become a world-famous writer. He had given multiple interviews, published hundreds of articles, write-ups, books and was now in a league of his own. That day truly was a turning point in his life.
Or maybe it would have been a turning point if Ramesh hadn't switched off his laptop and gone for a break. "I could've done better than him. I had much more talent than him" thought Ramesh fifteen years later as he was reading in his newspaper about a young writer who had just released a breakthrough novel. He was working at an IT firm as a junior manager. He had a wife and two kids. He had a beautiful family and a stable life in front of the society. But inside his beautiful family, nothing was beautiful. He had a dysfunctional marriage. Long working hours at a dead-end job. The fear of losing his next increment, his next promotion. This was his routine.
The only solace in his life was the fact that his dad was proud of him. Proud to have an engineer in his family. "But he would've also been proud to have a successful writer in his family" he used to think. Just maybe. But now he had no way to find out.