When I was in class four, I went to boarding school (circumstances pushed me that way, it was almost inevitable). I was nine/ten years old at that time. It was my first time ever to live away from my mother. I never realised how much pain that would cause me until I bid the family goodbye as they walked away from the school gate, with the red dust rising and falling beneath their feet. I mean, for me, going to boarding school had always seemed to be an indication of freedom from family orders….and again, I would be able to pick what clothes to wear when I needed to.
In actual sense though, boarding school was not a freedom centre. If anything, I’d like to believe that it had more rules than being at home. Either way, I can recall spending my Saturday afternoon sobbing in the balcony, when everyone else including myself was supposed to be taking a nap. But, I couldn’t help it. Those moments possibly could mark the most homesick I have ever been. Ever.
Glad to say, days somehow got better as I got used to the place, and the people…the school tradition and whatnot. Talk of tradition! You may have heard of this culture in boarding schools, where you kind of establish your own little families among your schoolmates. When the situation is serious, a senior student could even be your “grandma” or something like that. For me though, I just found myself a sister. (#MyMiracle2010)
Rhobi. That was her name. Light, fair skin and a dark beauty spot on her chin. At that time she was quite tall (maybe because I was the short one). It’s true to say she was the highlight of my year.
Not only did she offer to handwash my clothes at times (she did my LAUNDRY!!!), or iron my clothes, or save me a seat during chapel time, she taught me to harmonize to pretty much any tune – this part was rather “harsh” though, she pinched me when I wasn’t singing what should have. Rhobi helped me belong. I made a lot of friends with the senior students during that time (always a wise thing to do) and just the fact that she was an awfully lovely character makes me so
The featured image is a thing that was on her orange tracksuit, that I have kept for this long (I know, I know, sometimes I keep too much. I can’t help it), maybe it was on her zipper or the tightening ropes?! I’m not sure. It doesn’t matter. But I have it. And seeing it today has made me so happy! All the warm memories just came jogging back home.
Rhobi touched my heart in a way no one else did. When she cleared from school that year, I purposed in my heart that I will never again have a school sister, because, honestly, I did feel very strongly that nobody could fill that void. And so it was.
At the end of the day, it’s the little things that matter. Shout out to all the people out there who share bits of their heart, and love relentlessly even for the least of these. Bless you all! You make the world a tolerable place to live in. And I appreciate your service.😊