Remember chanting in a chorus, ” Good Morning Ma’am”, the thrill of it at the start of every new day at school. Ah! Those were the days; days of school uniforms, of tied back hair, of fun, of learning, of friends, of books and pencils, of homework, of looking up to our teachers as angels descended from very heaven.
The word teacher inspires respect in every heart, after all they are the hands that mould the soft clay of our young selves. Whether we realise it or not we imbibe so much, too much from our teachers.
On this Teacher’s Day I cannot help but think how very fortunate I was to have such wonderful and amazing teachers who inspired and encouraged me all through my school life. They made me what I am today.
On this special day I want to thank them from the bottom of my heart for making school a place I went to every day with enthusiasm and joy; for arousing in me curiosity about all things; for having the patience to explain things to me over and over again when I did not quite get it.
Just a few expression of thanks which will never be enough:
Thank you Mrs. Gabrielle for awakening the wonder of mathematics in me, yes, maths. Your love of the subject, the passion with which you taught it made mathematics seem so awesome and magical. Numbers, x, y and z became stuff that could be controlled and conquered to be our willing slaves.
Thank you Mrs. Mitter for making me realise the eternal beauty of literature. You taught with such a love of words and their meanings that I have till this day carried that special love of reading, enjoying, and appreciating the written word in my heart.
Thank you Miss Mavis for pointing out that I was slacking in my studies and gently bringing me back to my books and studies, but more than that for encouraging me to always do my best, to live up to my potential and never give up.
Thank you Miss Sudha for straying from the topic of science at hand that unforgettable day when you carried us all along with your fantasies to what the future could be like thereby stoking the fires of our own imaginations.
Thank you Mr. Bannerjee for making that special high table in the physics lab so that we would needs have to sit up straight, making us realise we need not give in to gravity always.
Thank you Mrs. Davis for the PT lessons but more for the strong lithe, and active body you yourself had which was an inspiration to all of us to tend to, respect and honour our own.
Thank you Miss Chatterjee for awakening a love of music and ragas in me. When I sang a note wrong you never ever rebuked me, not once, only said gently, sing it again, sing it again. You made failing seem ok, and trying and trying again the right thing to do.
Thank you Mrs. Chugh for expressing your amazement when I wrote my very first poem for the school year book. You confirmed by asking whether it was indeed written by me and believed me instantly. You made me feel so special.
School was certainly a wonderful experience I can tell you with conviction mainly because of all these teachers who affected me much more than their humble selves might ever have known.
When I managed to join medical college I came across quite another breed of mentors and teachers. These were strong, intelligent, capable and supremely talented, each in their own fields. I learnt not just from their subject matter that they propounded forth upon in the lecture halls but also from what they were as doctors, as people who had progressed far in their lives, enhancing and honing their knowledge and professional skills.
There was surgeon Dr. Grewal who could expertly locate a stone in the kidney and have it jump out with just his two fingers inside the abdominal cavity; whose skin stitches were not less than a work of art.
There was Dr. Ullah who every single day chalked out amazing diagrams on the college board in anatomy classes. It showed us what an extensive and detailed knowledge he had of the human body and gave us inspiration to aspire to the same. His personality and very presence was awe inspiring and all of us, each one of us stood almost in reverence of his dignity and sober demeanour.
Thank you Dr. Elhence for making medicine such an amazing subject, for creating in us that Sherlock Holmes like approach to the correct diagnosis of disease from the symptoms, signs and pathology reports of the patient. Thank you also for making us realise that a patient is not just a “case” but a living, breathing person who must be treated in his own right, no matter he be just a simple farmer or labourer.
Thank you Dr. Sharma for giving us such intricate hints as to the diagnosis and treatment of skin diseases, and Dr. Gupta for teaching us more about the eye than we actually needed academically to know at that particular point of time. I carry your lessons in my mind and heart to this day.
Thank you Dr. Handa for showing us that it was okay to be vulnerable to the suffering of others, for being shit scared at the prospect of losing a patient, but being brave enough to still carry on and do the very best one could. It required a rare kind of courage to be able to expose that side of ones personality to those junior and upon whom one tries to create an “impression”. Sir, your impression of a human being struggling everyday with his vulnerability to abide by his duty has more than made a lasting impact on me.
I could go on and on. All I will say in the end is that all you teachers and many more, were truly amazing and gave to me more than just knowledge of subjects. You created in me an ability to abide by human values above all else, to maintain a healthy, active curiosity about life, to ask questions and to seek answers. Most of all you taught me what it means to be human in the real sense. There are no adequate words of gratitude for that.