I looked at the watch and cursed my luck as my dad’s pyaara Bajaj chose that very day to throw its tantrums. When it refused to start, I ran with all my might. Sweat-drenched, falling short of breath, I reached the school gate only to find it closed for the day.
I shook the gate and pleaded with the guard to let me in but I was ten minutes late. It was my science examination that day. I sat there crying bitterly hiding my face in the crook of my arms. Suddenly, I felt a pat on my shoulder. As I opened my eyes, I saw my mom trying to shake me up. I was on my bed in my cozy bedroom. Thank God! It was just a dream.
Exam time and I never went well with each other. What do you call it – chattis ka ankada tha hum dono k beech.
Such dreams were quite common those days. Exams made me anxious not only in dreams but also in reality. The concepts that were otherwise on my tips confused me and tested my patience, especially during the examinations.
Plus, minus is minus and minus, minus is plus mocked me, teased me, and mystified me a lot. Hindi choti ki and badi kee gave me the most trouble while writing an answer.
Science experiments that I could perform proficiently in labs laughed at my English when it was time to pen them down during the paper.
Social science gave me so much trouble that even during English paper, my mind meandered in the streets of the first world war, second world war, United Nations, Mughal empires and so on.
Here I would like to mention an anecdote.
Once, I reached the examination hall prepared with a subject other than the subject which had its exam. All hell broke loose on me on realizing my mistake. I always stressed about examinations and such blunder swept the rug from under my feet. My teachers and friends boosted my morale. Thankfully, a thorough revision was done in the class on that subject and I passed with flying colours.
Exams gave me jitters and I did some or the other mistake due to anxiety. But, then I started remaining more conscious and alert. I started writing the datesheet on the calendar so that no scope is left for any mistake.
I moved out well in advance from home taking into account contingencies like vehicle breakdowns or traffic jams so that I reach the examination hall on or before time.
I always kept extra pens, pencils, erasers, scales, and other necessary items.
I follow the same for my son as well. Thankfully, I have not passed on my extraordinary anxiety and examination fear genes to my son.