This Weekend I Time Travelled to 2003

When time doesn’t heal a wound

Richa Singh
Human Parts
Published in
6 min readAug 8


Photo by William Farlow on Unsplash

Can there be some good in the worst memory of your life?

As I mulled over this thought, it brought back some unpleasant memories.

It was one of those Fridays where, as I sat writing an old story, some wounds seemed to have opened up. This was me from 2003, who was in an engineering college. A place where she didn’t belong.

It led me down a roller coaster and caused me to see some events of the present from the eyes of my former self.

Want to take a peek into my stories of the past and the present?

I had no desire to study engineering, much less in a small town in India.

I wanted to go for a Bachelor of Science Program at St. Stephen’s college, in Delhi University, and even got admitted.

But my family wanted me to pursue engineering because it’s what they thought all intelligent kids did. Since many of my choices back then involved keeping my parents happy over what I wanted, I agreed.

When I came to the engineering college, I couldn’t adjust to the life there. I also couldn’t leave because of the fear of disappointing my family.

I could get decent grades, even when I didn’t devote time to study. Most of my energy went into dealing with the emotional pressure of being in a place I wanted to run away from.

Once, I went into a professor’s office to get a paper signed.

He commented on my dress. Something about ‘good students’ not dressing the way I did. I couldn’t believe if I was hearing this right.

I wore jeans and a sleeveless top. For me, it was the last thing I could do to hold on to my identity in this conservative place. And it was a huge modification from what I was used to, with no room for further change.

I didn’t talk about this with anyone because I could picture the advice being ‘to comply’. This professor was a well-respected man of integrity.

I felt deeply confused and embarrassed, which shook my confidence. Ultimately, I decided I was right on this matter.



Richa Singh
Human Parts

I help you navigate life transitions - I have lived and worked across 3 continents. Top writer in Ideas, Featured in Human Parts & Mind Cafe.