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Of Shershaah: Captain Vikram Batra Taught Me Something Important About Life

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Trigger warning: mentions of suicidal thoughts

“Take care to get what you like or you will be forced to like what you get.” Ever heard of this quote by George Bernard Shaw?

I heard about it during my school days through an interview of respected Dimple Cheema (late captain Vikram Batra’s beloved and fiancée), where she mentioned that “Vikram” used to say it to her whenever she had to make a tough decision in her life and it was hard to choose.

Dimple Cheema and Vikram Batra (on the right), were played by Sidharth Malhotra and Kiara Advani (on the left) in the Bollywood film Shershaah. Photo credit: Amar Ujala.

Being a young, naive teenager, I always admired captain Batra and our fallen comrades who sacrificed their lives for our today and tomorrows, but I never realised the power of these words. I never thought that one day, it will help me in one of my toughest decisions.

Good Days And Bad Days Are A Part Of Life

Like joy, sadness also has a place in our lives. Sadness permits us to release the baggage of emotions that we carry. If we try to push it away, it will exhaust us; and if we try to envelop it inside,  it will fester only and grow.

It’s okay to feel sad if one can’t set it free.

This is exactly what I felt in my roughest phase! But, how do I know it was the roughest phase? Well, I can’t predict that, but one thing I can commit to is that now I have accepted life knowing that there will be challenges, but that it will all be worth it.

I’m not too sure where I sit on that, but I do absolutely believe in destiny, and that everything that happens, happens for a reason. While I’m alive, I will handle whatever life throws at me.

When I faced a tough decision in my life, it felt like it was the end of the world. I felt like what was right wasn’t right and the left was already not right. I was dealing with a dilemma and as days passed, I was beginning to question my rationale.

I just wanted to sleep all day. I didn’t want to face anyone. Ending my life was a constant thought in my head, all day long.

I couldn’t face my parents. Eventually, I felt like I wanted to open up to my parents and tell them: “Look, I am not happy. I want to do this and not this…” After a lot of hue and cry, I was allowed to do what I wanted to, but what if I wouldn’t have been rebellious?

I would have disappeared by now…

So, make sure that when it comes to a tough decision, you give yourself the room to think between the stimulus and your response. Break free from the ruinous reaction mode.

It is sensible to consider the long-lasting ramifications of any decisions you make because you don’t want to end up doing something you will have to remorse over, in the future. But, it is equally important to consider what might happen if you don’t do something about it.

Don’t let weighty opportunities pass you by because they involve taking a big decision.

Question yourself about what you may attain, or leave behind, in the long-term by making certain selections.

What Does Your Heart Say?

Your gut instincts are often the fair ones, and you should never make a decision that doesn’t resonate with you inner voice.

Put aside uninspiring convention, unpleasant advice and discernment from others, and you yourself introspect if this is something that you actually want… Is it something that speaks to you as only a heartfelt and deepest desire can?

Choices are like a spark plug!

When you make a decision, it paves the way for other situations to occur, which you will then have to deal with. It is always necessary to have others’ interests at heart when making a choice, but you shouldn’t end up sacrificing your own needs and desires to please other human beings.

When dark situations arise, it is an opportunity for you to divulge the leader in you. Get out of bed and deal with them, head-on. If I feel okay now, so will you… I promise!

Lastly, I would like to say a heartfelt and big thank you to late captain Batra, who was awrded the Param Vir Chakra posthumously. He cheered me up with his words. They will continue to echo in my ears and spur me into action.

Captain Vikram Batra (to the extreme right) in military garb. Photo credit: @HemantSorenJMM, Twitter.

I owe it to him! He was a hero way before he went to Kargil. I salute the hero on what would have been his 47th birthday i.e., today.

Featured image is for representational purposes only. Photo credit: Sidharth Malhotra, Facebook.
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