looking back and describing my life I see all how I am disadvantaged due to some major challenges I
"Suryansh the fact can't be changed, you got an 'F' on your assignment because
you didn't turn it in."
As I heard these words, I next to Ms' Bhatia, my 11th-grade Maths teacher, in shock. I just had
arrived in my new school and was still adapting to this new environment. This was the most
transformative moment of my life. By failing I had the space to reflect on what I had done wrong and
on the lesson that my parents passed to me to be strong and not afraid of making mistakes because
mistakes lead to blazing new trails. My mother inspired by her mother's strength moved away from
her home and became the first in her family to earn a master's degree, a degree uncommon for a
woman in a city like Kanpur in the 90's. After the rollercoaster of failure and success, she also
received a Ph.D. degree and became a role model for the other family members. And my father, it
took him 10+ years to attain financial stability and became an asset to his workplace. He's been one
of the millions of people who have been laid off in the last couple of decades and has had to start
over multiple times but each time he's re-build himself with more resilience.
My mother was always been vocal about taking a risk and learning through setbacks. Her
determination taught me to stand up for myself and follow my dreams regardless of the challenges.
After that 'F' in maths, I was determined to formulate a plan of action, I let my fear of not speaking
fluent English aside and dared to make mistakes out loud because I knew I would learn more that
way. I asked for clarification from teachers and classmates anytime I needed it.