Every year the headlines flash myriad versions of “CBSE XII Board Results Tomorrow”, producing infinite anxiety and suspense. Today, another lot got their own dose of shock, reward, and disappointment. My only wish is to congratulate them, out of empathy for the system we survive in.
From birth until the very end, we succumb to the pressures of competition. While some pass with flying colours, yet most us settle with the not so great marksheet. Today, numerous posts will shout— “YOUR PERCENTAGE DOESN’T MATTER”, and, from personal experience, I must attest to this. From being a ‘straight A student‘ to barely entering the golden 90+ range, my journey has been one of depression, introspection, and strength.
In 2017, out of over 10 lakh students, only 10,091 students scored over 95 percent and 63,247 students scored over 90 percent. While these high bracket percentages grant the privilege of getting into top universities, a forgotten side of the story is of those who don’t get their choice of college due to an even higher cut-off. “[It] felt like failing all over again, but I didn’t have the luxury to complain or whine about it”, as Vineeta Rana, the former Editor of DU Beat, aptly puts it.
While the hype around the country, state, and city toppers top the charts, somewhere in a discreet corner of newspaper lies one column news about student suicides that occur around the country. The reality is that parents and society pressure the child into an expectation of outperforming everyone. Given the unpredictability of CBSE, such expectations prove damaging to one’s mental health. If you are having suicidal thoughts or know someone who is, please get in touch with the required intervention. For assistance, here is a document compiling the dos and don’ts for parents and teachers.
In the face of the result before you, I want every student to realise that — favourable or unfavourable — your marks do not reflect your talent, personality, or your intellect. These numbers will only decide the college that you’ll be placed into and nothing beyond that. Yes, it is easier to have a head-start in your professional journey but, success will dawn upon those who will climb up the ladder, no matter where they have landed, and reach the goals they have set out to achieve.
I could give numerous examples of people who weren’t academically bright, yet have reached a sense of success in their lives. But, not only does this condone a traditional definition of success, associated with wealth and power, but I also realise how little this consoling can help you. The ‘pissing my pants’ feeling to the shattering effect of punching your details on the CBSE website will last for a while. Though I assure you it won’t last long. Maybe, three years from now you can give a TEDx talk on your journey. The idea is to just take this moment and live in it, not what you could have done in the past to make it better or what will happen in the future. Look for alternatives, if your Plan A (getting great grades and qualifying the cut off) has failed then formulate Plan B. There are more than one way to enter in Delhi University. You can still study for the 12 entrance based courses. Remember: When the going gets tough, keep going. You can do it.
All the best! Brave through!
Feature Image Credits: Kartik Kakkar for DU Beat