When IIM Bangalore Becomes Your Home – Why Do You Feel A Void?

I wrote this way back in December 2015. It makes perfect sense after Convocation. It is dedicated to all my IIMB batchmates. Do give it a read. 🙂

“Why aren’t you having food? Don’t you like it?” my Mom said, serving me 2 chapatti’s (Indian bread) with one of my favourite vegetable, Aloo-Matar (potato and peas), and carrot pickle. But it was different, I couldn’t even eat a single bite. Shouldn’t I be happy? I had returned home after spending 6 long months at IIM. This was the longest period I had been away from home and I was looking forward to this moment for the past 15 days. But something was not right; I was feeling a bit dejected and it felt as if something was missing. What could that be?

It was just yesterday that my exams got over. There was a sense of relief and joy. I won’t say I was euphoric, but yes, I was eagerly counting down the remaining hours to board the flight next day. Like the bird who just want to escape from the cage, I went out for lunch immediately. Does that mean I was bored of this place? Or was I trying to escape the hustle, bustle and noises of my batch mates? You can’t always interpret your actions. And when you are with friends, you don’t always need a reason to go out, do you?

If food made the day, the night was reserved for something else. It’s not just the liquid that matters, but it’s the people whom you are with which matters. You just forget whose sitting on the next table or what is being played on that TV. You don’t even want to listen to the music of your favourite band. You are living that moment engrossed in conversations with your friends. I wished it all froze till I exhausted myself appreciating the moment; believe me, sometimes you lose count of the time doing that. I hope science finds a way to relive and recap those moments. I would be its first customer.

And that’s why you feel that void. In the previous moment, you are so high with emotions – dancing, laughing, joking and pulling the leg of your friends. And the next moment you are sitting on that dining table in your home, eating food in that calm and composed setup. The difference in those instants is so high, and that too within a period of 8 hours that your brain gets confused. Should it be happy that you are at your home after so long or should it be sad because the amazing moments you experienced just a couple of hours ago are gone? This creates a ruckus and result is a void where you are happy and sad simultaneously.

Habit is another reason. The human mind likes to find patterns and live in that. You were surrounded by those energetic 25 years old youths in the class, in the mess and few in your dreams that the brain assumes that as the truth. Even if you consciously try to convince yourself this isn’t real, your subconscious mind accepts it as the reality. You come back home and poof, you realise it’s gone. It was a part of the journey but not the destination. Although you miss those moments, you miss that place more because it had become a habit. But the next moment you are at your home, the place you spent 24 years. You should be elated. But the result is same – a void.

It’s all just for today. This void will fill easily. After all, home is where our heart actually resides. A few hours later brain will again form that pattern. And I would probably again be writing the same thing when I return to campus from home.


This article first appeared on Sahil’s Facebook Profile.


About the Author:

Sahil Kukreja has studied at IIT Delhi and has recently graduated from IIM Bangalore. He has previously worked in Have worked in Analytics, Strategy and Venture Capital roles. He is a frequent writer on Quora.