A Decision: Joining Khushi-A shelter home for street kids(only girls)

I recently got selected to be a part of the Dil-Se campaign run by Center of Equity studies in Delhi. Under this campaign, i will now be teaching in a shelter home for girls upto 14 years of age. The incident that inspired me to join Teach for India involved a kid who was homeless and had taken shelter in a railway station. He was one kid who can very rightly be labelled as the last kid or the most deprived of its rights out of all the kids in India, for he neither had a family, nor a home and education for him was nothing but a word. I wanted to reach out to such kids and ensure that they got atleast some of their rights back. I wanted to get them education so that they could atleast have some fair chance when compared  to their other counterparts. Getting selected to teach in a Dil-Se shelter home is taking me a step closer to my dream of getting every such kid’s their due share of rights in the world.

Thinking of it Dil-Se is the next logical step for me and also that the level of impact that i would be able to make in my 2nd year of fellowship would increase multi-folds after joining it. Also, the next level of impact that i want to make in my school is one involving fundamental changes or changes for which i would need to be at a much higher level than my current position and i am fully aware of the fact that being just a teacher in this school wouldn’t really get me there. Infact, if i am to think of bringing about those changes while functioning as a teacher in this school, i might impact the strong principal-fellow relations that we have built. They are changes which will have to be impacted on a public policy level and for that, i will first have to reach a position from where i am capable enough of executing projects of that magnitude, which in turn impact not just my but million other school’s like mine and thus bring about the right and necessary change in their way of operating. For reaching that level of impact, i will have to increase my own level year by year. Writing it all down right now makes it seem so so simple and clear. However, there is a very strong point that i am ignoring here, a point that involves a part of me that is much more stronger than just clear logic and something that doesn’t really work on reasoning.

I had an intuition about taking this step the moment i visited Shashank bhaiyya’s class way back in October, so was actually preparing my kids for the same. So, i would occasionally keep passing on hints to them that bhaiyya is here just for a year and you have to study on your own for yourself even if bhaiyya is or is not there. Over the past 3-4 months, i have worked really hard in building the value of being independent in my kids and i can even see them responding now to it. They have started taking resposibility for their own studies and i can see that sense of commitment towards their studies coming. However, while ensuring that they become independent, i never for once thought about the high levels of dependency that i was developing towards each one of them. The endless love and attention that i was getting from them has really brought me close to all of them. My past experiences have taught me to be a person who can move on easily once he decides on doing it. The way my heart is reacting in this case is totally different. I have not been able to look my kids into the eye ever since the decision, nor have had the courage to tell them of the decision. Infact, i think i am yet to accept the decision myself, i am busy running away from facing it.

The result has hit me really hard and i don’t have the strength to face it. I am so used to being greeted by those cute, filled with life faces every morning, i don’t know how i will ever be able to cope up without them. This was not the way how it was supposed to happen, i was not supposed to get so much attached to them. Just the thought of not seeing them everyday makes me wanna cry. I don’t have the strength to cope up with this, its almost like having 34 break-ups together.Its probably the first time in my life wherein on getting the result i wanted, my first reaction was bursting into tears, not out of happiness but out of an immeasurable amount of sadness that has engulfed me ever since. The decision has been made but the guilt of leaving them a year earlier will stay with me forever. I will miss each one of u a lot, a lot. I wish i could someday be able to explain to all of you why i needed to go. I know that all of you will be devastated with my selfish decision and wouldn’t ever want to talk to me again but i really hope that someday all of you would understand and forgive me. I wish i could express in words what i feel for each one of u, i wish i could explain to each one of you how u have impacted my life, how you have made it so so more special with all those beautiful moments, how you all have given a entirely new shape and meaning to my life, how you all have made me feel for the first time in my life that i am capable enough of doing something, how can i ever replace that infinite love you all gave me for just being me. I hope that someday i can justify my decision with my actions and make you all proud of me. I love u all and i am really very very sorry,very very sorry.

Your bhaiyya,

Nakul

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