When I was a student, I rarely raised my hand to answer the teacher’s questions. I was afraid of being laughed at if I answered it wrong. Then I went to the university, I was not an outstanding student. In class, I listened to the bit that I was interested in and I studied enough to pass the exam. Not too much, not too little, just right.
In my final year, I had 2 big latest examinations, one was graduation test and one was the entrance to study post graduate medicine as a resident. The latter one is the toughest test that can only taken once in a doctor life. Furthermore, they just took 5 medical students in whole students in my course for ENT program. It was actually a race in the literal meaning. Thus, everybody was very surprised when I decided to apply for this test.
After that decision, I focused more on studying. I sweated blood to make my dream come true. I studied more than 15 hours per day, 7 days a week. There was no party, no cinema, no hanging out after class for over 8 weeks. This was the routine that I followed during the last semester of my final year.
I had this dream of working and somehow securing a high position at my dream specialty. As I thought more about the real reason I wanted that dream, I realized that it was to prove to everyone that I, an average student, could get to the top of the industry. I wanted to achieve what seemed like an impossible feat to me. Yeah, this would be something I love to do, but I would be doing it for the wrong reason. I would probably be able to proudly tell people about my accomplishments during a high school reunion, or I could trumpet my successes on Facebook for everyone to see. I pictured impressed faces and maybe some applause. So, in the end, I’ve had my successes, proved them wrong, people probably felt sorry and ashamed for belittling me. But then I sudden realized that it is still my life, and whether I succeed or not, ultimately it doesn’t affect them. For the first time, I thought to myself that, acquaintances care less about me and my successes or failures than I thought they would.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that being happy and successful might be the best revenge, but then I found out the fact that being successful just in order to show them, I was not truly happy and satisfied. There will always be something for people to criticize- your career, your body, your personality, etc. There will always be something that is imperfect in their eyes. While I used to have definition of “success” – great jobs, big fat checks, a big house, big cars, at the moment I’d say you’re successful if you’re living the life you dreamt.
The real achievement I have done so far is not my test result, it is my new definition of success.