This professor with whom I happened to have just grudges and disagreements (on a very academic basis if you don’t mention some battles on the mummified basis of “amour propre” time to time) was on another jump of disagreement with me earlier this summer.
This discussion started with words of advice, bits of tangerine justification and of course, derails of those. However so the argument on a supposed pattern of thinking and academia, the reasoning culminated in the court of professor as it always does for students whose experience is one centimeter shorter than their pride. (A very nasty factor I tell you!)
But what I describe now is what happened today when a colleague of this former semester walked up to me and said how she was stunned at my guts to look at the professor in their eyes, question, attempt to justify my actions, be reprimanded, advised, spoke to in a higher tone but question again till the matter concluded in bits of some very precious learnings from the professor (I am not sure if that was a right thing to do i say, but maybe the diamonds of advices which came up after digging so far from the teacher made it all worth it in the end) and how my claim of nineteen redos (aka attempts to get through the right work which was supposedly again a failure in the eyes of the teacher) to the professor that day which in my eyes justified my case of work gave her a push, a motivation to get through bad days in her specialization department.
“You are too brave to be”, she said, “Had been it anyone, they would have not said a thing in defence or broken down on those really bad compliments!” She said.
Have been pondering about her words since. Not sure if the action I did months back and didn’t have the memory of until today when it was revived, was even a right thing to do in the first place.
Maybe not, and most hopefully it wasn’t.
Then why, I wonder she said it stuck with her ever since and gave her inspiration to do more than just effort as I did, she claimed? I may not know, and at this stage probably I don’t even want to.
The past few years have been overwhelming, and of course I haven’t loved them in any way except of these days when I realise intermittently I am probably not the same person anymore, not atleast the one who most definitely could break down at harsh words on her work, for that one thing I have held close since and do today too, just in a different kind of close.
A close which is open to criticism, A close which is not afraid of failing, A close which loves it much that the pain of criticism is still the same but a close which loves it freely, and is adaptable to changes. This close is new, and probably difficult. This close however, knows to accept and flow, over and over again.
Life is different to us in different intervals of time and so we become when the experience comes. Mutations in genetics are mostly legible but those in behavior and reactions of us, are scary sometimes and pleasing in other moments. It’s funny how having known this from my colleague just strangely stuck with me in a way i can’t describe. It is surreal when you hear someone praise you but not so much when you realize it wasn’t probably you in the first place, just time that day, playing with your words and actions which you might or might not approve as your past or future self.
The solution? I know not except maybe, to flow with all that comes and all which comes not, alike. Ukiyo, they say is a beautiful word which describes life for me today.