Give me some sunshine
Give me some rain
Give me another chance
I wanna grow up once again!
Soon after I crossed my early teens, this song became my anthem. I have always loved celebrating my birthdays, but in the recent years, I began to feel I was becoming an adult too soon. I felt as if I had time traveled into the future, each time I turned a year older. Whenever I looked around, there was more to do and to learn. That all the younger people were doing all these cool new things, was not helping me feel better. I had begun to regret that I had not pushed myself more to get out of my comfort zone and I certainly didn’t want to spend the rest of my years feeling this way.
Then I entered this world of big hugs and warm hearts. A place where making mistakes is considered a part of learning as well as a step toward getting better. Unlike, the conventional way of having to bear dire consequences each time you make a single mistake. The first thing I learnt here is acceptance. It’s so relieving when you are not required to please anyone. In all the while that we have been here, I been a hundred percent myself – my energetic self, the childlike me, the sad me, the weird me and so on and so forth. My ever supporting colleagues help me learn my ropes everyday and put up with my endless stories. My co-mentor and guide, Nikita Shah, does not leave out even minutest of details in guiding me. She often goes out of her way to make sure I don’t feel lost. She patiently puts up with all my chatter and questioning. And not once have I felt alone in my journey of being a mentor. It’s beautiful to see how everyone is always there for anyone who needs help, sharing solutions and feedback and looking out for each other.
And the children! Their happy faces motivate me to do whatever it takes to help them learn, even if I have to do something out of my comfort zone. I have already done so many things that I would never imagine doing before this. It’s beautiful to think like a child while planning my classes for them. It makes the inner child in me very happy. For me teaching is learning with a twist and that is exactly what is happening here. I learn so that I can teach. All these beautiful children are my inspiration, each day and I am ever grateful that I get to be a part of everyone’s journey here and they get to do the same for me too. Touching lives is my second chance to grow up again and do all those things that I feel I missed out in my childhood and teens. Truly, it’s a dream come true. I am glad and blessed to be here.
Parina joined Touching Lives this year as the mentor of Foundation Class. She has done her Masters in Psychology and is a student and performer of Kathak. Lucky for her children, she is never short of stories to tell.