What would optimism mean to you? Simply put, to be positive about incidents in our life; to see something positive in every bad situation?

Let me narrate one of my experiences on my recent trip. I happened to meet someone who for me, was one of the epitomes of positivity and hope. Why do I feel so? When you see a handsome guy in his 20s, crippled by a cruel twist of fate, what would be your first reaction? You would feel sorry, maybe. But when I left that place after meeting this youngster, I had no sympathy for him,  I had only respect,  utmost respect for him his parents who never gave up on him.

When fate has been cruel to us, many of us would curse our bad luck, simply surrender to the circumstance and just go on with the so called cursed life without doing anything to turn it around. But this youngster and his parents had fought fate and are in the process of turning things around.

This youngster (name withheld) suffered a fall during one of his trainings for Indian Military. Subsequently, owing to a head injury, he slipped in to coma. When he came out of coma, he had lost the sensation in his limbs, due to which he was restricted to a wheelchair. He needed support even for his basic things such as bathing, toilet etc. Even his speech had become slurred. From a handsome aspiring military officer, he had been reduced to a dependent child. This was in 2018. Fast forward to 2022, the youngster now not only walks on his own albeit with a limp but also tries to hold a cricket bat and play. He is a part of the conversations that his mother and her friends have, when they come to meet him. He does most of his work independently and is capable of eating food on his own, without spilling even one morsel.

When I was speaking about my son, I mentioned that ‘ if he clears his training’ to which this youngster stops me and says, ‘why do you say if he clears the training, say that he will clear the training’. I was speechless. Later, before leaving I told him that I would like a picture and if his mom would click our picture. He just put his hand around my shoulder, held the phone in his other hand and clicked a selfie.

A guy half my age, double my adversities had reiterated to me that being optimistic and content is a choice that we make. Being content depends on us and not on our circumstances. The same youngster on whom doctors had given up hope, loves to crack jokes and laugh aloud. His smile is contagious and I am convinced that one can never be disheartened with him around.

Million salutes to this youngster and his parents. Not all heroes are mentioned in books or shown on the silver screen. Some just walk among us.


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