From Mute To Lecturer Life Comes Full Circle
A Blog by Angshu Jajodia.
If someone were to ask me what the turning point in my life was, I would attest to just one incident that changed my life’s course completely. That incident happened twenty-two years ago when in the spring of 1992, my mother walked into the chambers of a highly acclaimed audiologist at one of the top medical institutes in India. She had just one question for the audiologist: “Will my child be able to talk?” The audiologist asked her, “What do you want from your child?” “I want him to talk to me, play with me, fight with me and do everything that any other child does!” my mother said. The audiologist decided to give my mother a reality check, as these were all out-of-the-world fantasies for a parent of a deaf child, and said, “But remember, your child is deaf. If he can say Ma Baba at the age of 15, consider yourself a lucky mother.”
Well, it has been a long two decades since that ‘reality check’ given to my mother by a top professional. I learnt to talk, I went through college, then university, and I’ve had a wholesome life in general. But it was the month of April 2014 that came to be a watershed moment in my life and the lives of my parents. I got a teaching assignment at a local college in Durgapur where I was to teach Masters level students pursuing MSW. I took four subjects: Economics, Sociology, Social Work Research and Community Development. Life indeed came full circle, at last. I was not supposed to speak, and here I was, poised to make a living from speaking and teaching. Irony strikes with the force of a cartoon anvil, indeed.
I am currently pursuing a doctorate in Social Work at Visva-Bharati University, and I recently qualified for the NET examination and even got awarded the Junior Research Fellowship (JRF), which is given to only the top 1% of those who qualify for the NET examination. So, nothing is impossible.
Life has indeed come full circle for us. And I am sure that it will come full circle for many others too. We just need to believe in the reality that we create for ourselves, not a reality that is given to us by others.
Angshu Jajodia, who has had a hearing impairment since birth, is a post-graduate in Social Work from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai. Earlier, he was not able to speak, but can now converse fluently in two languages and is learning a third. He is a Guest Lecturer at a private college where he teaches the social work course and is now a JRF scholar pursuing his PhD at Visva-Bharati University in the field of social sciences.