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I was born in a family who could afford all the luxuries. I was always dependent on my father and on his words. I remember the first day my father took me to school saying, “This is the defining moment of your life son, work hard” and I really did. I worked hard to get through primary school with nice grades on my result card. I was not good in sports because my father did not allow me to go for sports with my fellows, he believed that I should study harder as I am going through the “defining moment of my life”.
So in short, my whole school life was studded with only good academic grades and nothing more. As I moved in higher secondary classes I was again told by my father that this is the defining moment of my life and what I do in these years will shape my future life. Hypnotized by his words I was encouraged and was a position holder throughout these years.
I got admission in the college that was dreamed by every student. As I started my intermediate college, my father took me by my hand one day as if he had something really important to say, made me sit beside him, took a deep breath and said, “Son! I want to tell you. This is the real defining moment of your life, define the moment or let the moment define you” I could see that he really meant what he had just said.
So I worked hard those years maintaining my old scores! As I finished my college I wanted to pursue a career in law but my father convinced me that I was born to be an Engineer and that this modern era is just the right time to be one and added later with a sigh that how badly he wanted to be an engineer but could not afford it and Etcetera.
God knows my father was good with words or what, I got admission in an esteemed engineering institute with a notion of fulfilling his dream. Graduated with a high GPA when I would tell someone they would take two steps back look at me up and down like they have seen some indigenous creature on mother planet Earth.
I moved to England got settled in no time. I’d talk to my father and he was proud of me how I earned my defining moments. Time moved on and on as one day I received call back from my country about how my father passed away in the morning. I could not get the first flight for the next two days. I could remember last time I talked to him on the phone he said, “Son! You’ve been excellent with your education. Now this is the moment, the defining moment of your life, earn you a serious career”. So I missed his funeral, standing on his grave I gave every excuse I could give about why I was not here in the days when he needed me the most.
Well, I came back to life or England or whatever you’d like to call it, busied myself with my job. I won’t lie but I met the special one, being lucky here again, I married her the following year, on my wedding day it just occurred to me what my father would have said today probably, “Son! This day! I am telling you, is the defining moment of your life. Make your marriage work at any cost”
Life was never much busier before. Circle of life was limited to the struggle between Job and family, owning a house, a car. Time went on and on and here one day I was going to drop my son on his first day of school and on my way I talked to him, “Now son hear me! This is the defining moment of your life, don’t take your school too easy”. Soon I watched my son growing into a teenager, pursuing a career chosen by me, living a life defined by me. So as my hair started turning gray until I could not find a single black hair, my son was a graduate, moving country to country for the company he worked for.
One day I found myself opening my eyes in a hospital, I was half conscious, I could see folks trying to tell me how I had a heart attack last evening. I was still half unconscious. I knew that I won’t make it. I knew it in my bones. My son wasn’t there when I needed him the most and I experienced what you may call a ‘déjà vu’, he was probably out of the country and could not manage to get the flight or what.
All I could see was my life moving like a film right in front of my eyes. All my life I waited for the time when I was not busy, but that time never came. I realized that I really should have earned some sweet memories in my whole life, where I could barely recall any at the moment, on my deathbed as I closed my eyes forever I realized that I waited for Fridays all the weeks, Summers all the years and happiness all my life…