Learning for Life


“To write it- three months, To conceive it- three minutes, To collect the data in it- all my life.” F. Scott Fitzgerald.

More than a month into 2015 and life revolves around learning.

I have taken up a formal course of learning after so many years of leaving college; a very interesting course in public policy analysis. Just one week into the course and ‘The Hindu’s lengthy articles and the ‘Economic times’ not just make sense, but actually excite me. Who would have thought?

I am learning for the sake of it, and it is a new experience. I am learning so as to shake up the status quo, challenging myself, stepping into territories which make me doubt myself and tempt me to run back into my shell. The only way to get new ideas and fresh thinking is to get lots of new ideas from other sources and then bring up your own connections. There is no pressure to ‘perform’ but only to take the best from what the course has to offer.  The course is stressful because there are assignments, marks and discussions and a lot of reading to do but I have to just remind myself the reason I’m learning and everything falls into place- learning just for the sake of it.

On the other hand, it has made me appreciate what my 13 year old has to go through with her classes and assignments on top of other issues like peer pressure and bullying. She is being bullied by a classmate and ‘friend’ for some weeks now. Her response is to forgive her ‘friend’ as soon as she is nice to her and believe nothing is wrong. I know the mom of this other girl but I am not confident of speaking to her and getting a positive response. My daughter’s school has very vague, undefined channels of communication. There is a regular class teacher whom you can meet only when the school arranges its regular meeting. The teacher is young and inexperienced. The higher ups in the school management are distant and inaccessible.

None of this would stop me from approaching them if things got very serious but right now I feel that helping my daughter stand up ‘on her own’ and fight back would be the best solution.  I want her to know that she is worthy of friends who love her and care for her. I want her to learn that friends can stop being friends and that we have to be confident enough to move on.