It seems like just yesterday I was fretting over national exams, what would happen if I failed, what would I say to all the people I disappointed let alone myself after working so hard or so I believed. I pictured myself seeing questions in the final paper from the topics I hadn’t grasped so well in class or even cared to study because they simply gave me a hard time - asking myself what I would do!
I remember waking up at 3am in the morning to study (what we call “winter”) last year with only one thing on mind, ‘I’m running out of time!’ almost everything I thought about was something of this sort, even prayer became about asking God to somehow send an angel to do the exam for me! I bet some of you in that position right now know exactly what I’m talking about.
See, many times, what I didn’t realise is that success was within my reach. I simply had to aim at it, run for it, and get it. My parents had given what they could, my teachers had done their job, and my supportive friends had been there as much as they could. God didn’t need to send me an angel - he wanted me! He needed me to receive from him what he’d granted me if only I was willing to reach out for it!
I know this is the time when most of us doubt our capability to go beyond the very limits we have created in our minds yet it should be the time to refrain ourselves from listening to any limitations and simply work towards our goals.
It is also the time when it is hardest to focus completely on those goals because since we are closer to finishing another phase of our education and moving on to the next, we are pre-occupied by exciting plans, thoughts of what the near future holds in terms of new, fun experiences that await us... in short unnecessary distractions.
I say unnecessary because sooner or later you will realise, you actually have a VERY long way to go and you have only been preparing for the beginning of the actual journey. I guess we all learn by experience, but the sooner we have that in perspective, the better.
However, it is one of those special times in our lives because, we are challenged to finally get up from that comfortable place, where we have been working at our convenience, with the luxury of having people around to push us - the time when we finally have to present to the audience.
And this time, yes, all eyes are on you. It is perfectly understandable that it is nerve-wracking BUT look at it this way… you are finally here. If you can only look that fear and doubt in the face and say to it ‘I can do this!’ If you can only put your thoughts together, compose yourself and embrace this not as a threat but as your golden opportunity, remembering well that you have just one chance and you cannot afford to waste it, but knowing that what matters is that you give your very best, I can tell you this- all will be well!
We like to say I have already given it my best’, but I believe there is always more we can do to add onto what we did already. Raise your bar higher than you can see. Only then can you work towards the sky.
S.6 and S.3 candidates, I wish you all great peace as you approach the exams ahead. As for success, it IS within your reach!