Last Tuesday, my six-year-old daughter came back from school in high spirits. She had toped her class in the mid-term exams. As I indulged in her joy, I was taken back to something that had happened while I was in school…
I was a smart kid. But so were some other of my classmates. We had established a five-way rivalry at the top of the class. Three of them were ladies, and then there was this extremely loud boy named Nicholas and me. I wasn’t particularly fond of him. Not so much because of the competitor he was, but more so for his rowdy nature.
I was never bent up on losing to this group of pupils. However, during our final exams in seventh grade, I had worked so hard, but in the end, Nicholas topped the class. He was so ecstatic about it. In the school bus on our way home, he couldn’t stop talking about how he was the smartest one in class. His jibes were more towards me than anyone else.
I found my parents at home, watching the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope (Mould et al. 786). Usually, I would be excited about this, but I couldn’t be. My mom noticed my sadness. She enquired on what had happened. I told her about it, amid sobs. She consoled me with the promise that I would do better than Nicholas next time around…
So, as I hugged my baby girl, I couldn’t help but wonder if there was a kid right now sobbing in their parents’ arms because of not topping their class at the expense of my daughter…
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