“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”
– Eleanor Roosevelt
I have used this quote on countless occasions, in a number of essays and articles for an even greater number of applications, publications and blogs. The beauty of this quote lies in its simplicity and its ability to inspire people. At the risk of sharing my secret recipe for successful applications, I want to share this with all of you because never before have I found it to be more apt, than it is to us right now.
Initially, I was of the opinion that the college I get admitted to would decide my future course of actions. I will be what the college makes of me in the 1 or 2 years for which I am there. With the bigger brand names swinging past me without so much as an acknowledgement, I was picked up by another big brand which apparently saw some potential in me. I was excited, elated, ecstatic, *insert some more synonyms here*, and relieved. Missing out on an opportunity like this would have led to some amount of distress and self-doubt, but all’s well that ends well. It felt like the promise of a long weekend, a glass of ice-cold lemonade on a hot summer afternoon, the aroma of a home-cooked meal after spending months away from home.
Fast-forwarding to today, that feeling has somewhat subsided. Leaving aside the intense amount of labor required to fulfill our academic requirements, I would want to think that there isn’t much I could complain or whine about. Actually there isn’t, because I don’t think it fair to complain about something for which I am as responsible as the next person. And I promise that I am not going to complain about anything, neither should you. But what about the people who do not have to share this burden of responsibility with us but still think of it as theirs? They have every right to complain, but again the beauty lies in the fact that they don’t.
They will tell us, show us, hold our hands and walk up to face it with us, but they will not complain. Why? Because they don’t have the power to do so. The power has been handed down to us, and, for lack of a better cliché, “with great power comes great responsibility”. All of us have heard the fairy tales and the horror stories, the success stories and the struggles, and as another fellow Spartan put it in another post – the good, the bad and the ugly. Our predecessors have witnessed the ugly and the bad so that we can see the good. The question we have to ask ourselves is: Would our successors think of us in the same light?
Not having the power to complain about the unpleasant, I can only exercise my will to appreciate and applaud the pleasurable. There have been moments, people and some moments with some people that have led me to believe that I was not picked by an act of fate. In those moments, people and some moments with some people, I have felt that potential within each one of us, you must have too. There are names I would like to name, moments I would like to recount and feelings I would love to describe. But if you can already think, remember and feel all of these inside your head, my job here is done.
Coming back to the quote we started with, the future has always been in our hands. We just have to believe in our dreams to be able to shape it into whatever we want to make of it. Again, at the risk of using more than one cliché in a space of less than 300 words, “together we can, and we will”.
I am not what this college will make of me, I am what I will make of this college.
– A Spartan