The entire crowd was roaring with claps and cheers while tears filled my eyes at the moment before me. I was not really anticipating a standing ovation but my heart filled with a sense of satisfaction after knowing I had achieved what I had wanted for so long. I felt the medal being put around my neck and a bouquet being handed. The claps never stopped but I think they increased as the moments passed by. When I look back to everything that happened, I feel glad that it happened. Of course, it was not an easy journey but it was a journey worthwhile.
I lost my eyesight when I was a kid of about 4 years old. It really bothered my family at first because we were just another middle-class family in a small town. I was not born with this eyesight but rather ‘received’ it because of the wrong medicine. I was admitted to a school for blinds till 8th standard but when it was the question of higher education, my parents decided to shift me in a private school. Of course, back in those times, private school officials were not so open-minded to have a blind student learning amongst them so I was welcomed in a Zilla Parishad school instead. Education was only for the purpose of me having primary education. Even if I was blind, like every student studying never excited me. I wanted to do a bit more but had to wait before I could begin.
Music had somewhat amused me and seeing how much it was loved, I wanted to give music a chance. I had a knack for classical music and started learning it professionally when I was 6 years old. I began composing hip-hop music when I was around 16 years old. People around, except for my parents, weren’t really supportive because we – the disabled – are kind of underestimated in society. It hurt a little when people did not pay any attention to my love for music but right after I recorded my first music video, I was appreciated by all.
My opportunities grew when I moved to a bigger city, where being a blind student was not a curse but rather a boon. I got an opportunity to perform in Sri Lanka and Columbia where I received the silver medal for performing my own music. With the wish to achieve more, I started preparing for Dubai. The contestants were supposed to create their own music on the stage at the very minute for which I achieved the gold medal there. It was the first international gold medal I had bagged and it was a proud moment for my entire family. From being a blind student who was struggling to read and write to achieving a gold medal, I think I came a long way.
The handicapped are treated differently, spoken to different and sometimes even ignored. At times these little things, that go unnoticed to the people around, do matter to us. It does not take much to do what you want. All it takes is the courage to decide you want to pursue your goal. The roads to your destination will open on its own.
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