Surviving and Thriving: My Success Story

During the lively passage of days from 2014 April to 2015 May, in a very mid-teenage phase of my life, I lost touch and connection with the outer world. I simply forgot how to respond to a simple greeting of ‘HI’ or ‘HELLO’ and I became that introvert which I was never intending to become.

Now I had to make an important decision in my life, that was the moment when I understood the fact that ‘I am the only individual who can change my life’ and nobody else can do that for me.

Just imagine a classroom full of liveliness where everyone is interacting with each other, but you sit in one corner of that classroom with nobody to interact with. But, in your mind, you are already imagining a scene where you’re interacting with each other the moment you think of such an atmosphere!

But my dear friends, the reality is quite unimaginable where you can’t even dare to visit and strive to initiate a conversation with someone of your age in that crowded room, you feel all alone.

Readers, that’s how my life used to be a couple of years ago! But today I can write my about my own Journey proudly and say that I’m Khushi Khater and I’ve 5 major awards listed to my name: My two poems were published in INTERNATIONAL POETRY DIGEST NEW YORK-MARCH 2018. I’m an official record holder in the INDIA BOOKS OF RECORD, I won the INDIA STAR ICON AWARD 2019, I was also awarded Global Young Leader Fellowship & KARMAVEER CHAKRA AWARD by iCONGO in association with United Nations, and I also have received the NARI SAMMAN AWARD 2020. But my friends, these awards might sound like a badge of honor to many of you reading but trust me, these are not meant to hide my scars.

Those scars, which I had to face during my journey of change and improvement. So, when I decided to change and improve myself, that was not an easy phase of my life as during those 1-1.5 years of my life I had developed my own world full of introversion to a very huge extent. I simply forgot how to strike a conversation and I became that introvert and on other hand, I did not know what should I do, I became that child of my class whom everyone used to remember sitting all alone in the last bench corner hiding away from everyone’s eyes and also who use to avoid all social interaction be it, friends or family.

But when I realized that it could be worse than staying in complete isolation which I was staying in and again then, I was ready to get hit again by the world on the ground, my grade 9 half yearly examination results were out and I scored only 40% and was crying till I went home and trust me, I thought my parents would scold me, abuse me, beat me and torture me just like other parents do to their children, but trust me my parents did not react in that way. Of course, I got little scolding which I think I deserved and they explained to me where did I go wrong, how should I be studying, they tried being my best friends and at the end, they are my real best friends and that was the day I felt a bit comfortable like 0.0001% after a long time.

But I never knew that the very next day when I got to my school, I would have to hear things like “I’m a failure, I’m good for nothing, they even told me that I would never pass out from school…etc’. But was not that something true? Because I became very weak both physically & mentally. My parents were noticing these changes, soon they even came to know a few reasons, and then they decided to change my school.

So, as the year 2015 came, my school was being changed to a whole new environment. I was so weak that I was an easy target for the bullies, there were many incidents which has affected my mental health but there is this one incident in particular which affected my mental health very badly. It was the dispersal time and all the children were excited to go home, meet their friends from other classes, boarders were excited that they are also going back to the hostel and few were going home as it was Friday among all this chaos.

There was a particular group in my school who then decided to bully me for no reason and as I was walking down the stairs to go and board the bus, someone from this gang had put their leg in between as obstacle and I had fallen down very badly. I somehow managed to go to the infirmary and got myself bandaged and I was, all the way towards home was crying till my home came.

As soon as my mom saw me injured, she had complained in school, and actions were taken against those people. A few days later, it was first parent-teacher meeting in my new school and as usual, my mom met all my subject teachers and coordinators and they had all praised me and mom was happy to hear that in a span of 1 month that I had improved a lot academically but what made her sad was when my class teacher spoke about me regarding my minimal interaction and by then she had also sensed that something was wrong with me but I was not opening it to anyone.

Later even after a lot of conversation they had with me, I spoke about the bully which I was facing and things were taken to a higher authority, necessary actions were taken. That was the day when I realized once again that if I won’t open up, things won’t be understood by anyone. But since I was affected very badly, it was difficult for me to interact with anybody because of the sequence of events and activities which were happening.

I was always baffled and full of anxiety and when I use to see others of my age enjoying their life, that was the time when I understood that there was a huge difference between Surviving and Thriving. After seeing this only, I had to ask myself a few questions ‘Is this the life which I want to live? Don’t you deserve to be happy? Don’t you want to enjoy your life like others?’ and that day I understood only ‘I can change my life the way I want and nobody else can do that for me.’

From that day, I started my journey of change. The reason why I was stuck in the dark life was that I was only focusing on the negatives thoughts about me. So, I decided to flip the coin to the other and focus on the positive sides. I had stopped comparing myself with anyone else and I would rather compare myself with my own yesterday and allowed only motivating voices in my mind like ‘Khushi you can do this’, ‘ you can achieve this’, you can’t fall’, ‘you’re meant for great things’.

These voices even helped me when I was completely unknown in my environment. I started participating in all the activities which my school use to conduct and I even started winning at that moment of time. My greatest fear was public speaking and I even overcame that also at an age of 14 by delivering my 1st ever speech in front of 500 plus people of my school including the SLT, Teaching and Non-Teaching staff and everyone was seeking to vote me for becoming ‘Deputy Head Girl’.

Soon I only saw the positive sides and tried removing all the negativity from my life. I started performing better in academics and as well as non-academics. Remember, I told earlier in the beginning that ‘I was told that I would never pass out from school & I would forever be stuck in school?’ Now it’s been 2 years since I’ve passed out from school, I honestly still can’t believe that I did it. I’ve so many appreciative and supportive people around me and trust me when I decided to change my life that day, I even decided to not look back and accept all the hurdles which I have in my journey to embark.

Soon, I went to the college in which I wanted to and started living in a hostel far away from my comfort zone. When I say that I am changing my life & improving it, the driving forces behind are my first and most importantly my family who was always like a strong pillar of strength standing behind me, my school who gave me endless opportunities for shaping me. Today, my dear readers, all the achievements which I have received were just at a mere age of 16, 17, 18, and I want to achieve more. I would like to tell you all that ‘Believe in yourself to become your best version’ and my dear friends’ failures and rejections are just a part of life. When we start accepting them we start improving ourselves. So, go live the life which you’ve imagined.

All the Best & Thank You for Reading a small part of my life.

Drop a Hi to Khushi at, 

Instagram:  @khushi_khater

Twitter:  @khushi khater

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