You’re mechanically scrolling down your feed, questioning your self-worth, asking yourself for the reason of your existence, you don’t laugh at the meme your friend tagged you in, or you laugh too hard, so hard that tears start rolling down your cheeks. But these aren’t happy tears. They’re from the pain you’ve bottled up inside. After all, everyone around you will eventually get tired but this pain won’t go away.
You’re 18 and you’re done with life. You didn’t make it. You didn’t make it to med school/ engineering college/ PMA/ any other field. You didn’t make it in life. You’re a failure. That’s what the voice inside your head keeps telling you. Your family is either blaming you, and rightly so you think, for not putting in enough effort. Or they’re supporting you, but you can’t face them. You don’t need sympathy.
When I was 18, that is exactly how I felt. Let me tell you a little bit about myself. My name is Maryam and I’m 22 years old and I couldn’t be happier with my life Alhumdulillah. I am studying in my dream college, doing what I always wanted to do. I have an amazing family and the most amazing friends. But when I was 18, I thought my life had ended.
I had always wanted to go to Army Medical College for my BDS and I didn’t make it. Although my family was extremely supportive, but to me, the world had ended. I saw my friends getting in to different medical colleges, becoming doctors, living my dream. And what was I doing? Nothing.
My parents advised me to take a year off, enjoy life and then try again. So here I was, taking a gap year that I totally hated (initially). But then things changed. I slowly started talking to Allah, pouring my heart out to Him, listening to stories about miracles, learning about the value of life, the purpose of existence. It wasn’t that I wasn’t into religion at all before, but it was then when I felt that I connected with Allah. It was in that year I realized that if you put your trust in Allah, He will never let you down. And He didn’t. I gave the test again and got in! Yes, I made it to my dream college, but as a better person. I had grown so much as a person that year, I met new people, I interned at a school and a hospital, I had so many new experiences that I wouldn’t have had, had I gotten in on my first try. I spent more time with my family, I visited so many new places, I learnt how to cook so many things, I learnt how a music video is shot, I just gained so much as a person, that I can’t put into words. And believe me when I say this, I have NO REGRETS. I wouldn’t change a thing if I ever got to do it all over again.
So enjoy your gap year. Build friendships, experience new things, travel, volunteer, work, intern, make a bucket list and fulfill it.
And relax, it will all work out. Stop feeling worthless. Trust His plan. Work hard and pray harder. You will get in, IA.
And even if you don’t make it to whatever college/degree/profession you want, whatever you get will be so much better. A lot of my friends didn’t want to do BDS initially, but now they wouldn’t trade it for the world.
Put your trust in Allah and believe in yourself and conquer the world.