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Vishal Agrawal, Lucknow

29 January, 2021

What I have learned from my Child

My son is 24 years old and in his final year of a MBA course in Mumbai. In March 2020, just before the lockdown was announced he was doing a community service project in a remote village in Mahrashtra as a part of his curriculum. Sensing the situation he booked a train ticket to his hometown in Lucknow to reach home just 6 hours before the lockdown began. But on the way he made sure that his two other friends made it safely home. I learnt an important lesson here – whatever the circumstances; don’t abandon your friends. Offer them help and support and they will remember you for life.

After a while classes started on a virtual platform “Zoom” . The ease with which he adapted to this new method of learning again had a lesson for me – Be quick to adapt to the changes happening around you.

Sometime in August this year, all the students of his batch were competing for the limited number of internships being offered by companies. One particular day – I remember distinctly he had four back to back interviews lined up starting from 6.00 am in the morning. He had hardly slept for an hour the preceding night – preparing for the interviews, gruelling psychometric evaluations and case studies. He did not make it in the first three interviews. Only one interview was left and if he did not make it in the final one – he would remain “unplaced” and would have to work pro bono. He did not give up and finally succeeded in his final attempt. It had an important lesson for me - when the going gets tough; the tough get going.

I had never imagined that my son would be staying with me for such a long stretch during his final year of MBA but conditions made it so. He missed out on campus life and the bonding it offers with friends and faculty. But he made up for it by keeping in touch with them virtually through video calls, whatsapp and mails. Again an important lesson – When life gives you lemons – make lemonade.

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