16 AUGUST 2017

Dear Barb,

As much as I'd love to go back and fantasize about the last two months of my memorable summer vacation - including my competition at Sweden, and my time in Edinburgh, there is a huge red siren glaring in front of my eyes telling me 'FINAL YEAR APPROACHING'.

So last night I had a tiny freak out moment where I went through my final year schedule and looked at all the dates of my examinations and practicals. Then, I also started making mental notes of when I should start studying and how I can balance my table tennis, the podcast, femindia, our charity, and giving you attention. So whenever I have to plan a study schedule, I always work backward from the date of the actual exam. With a lot of calculations, my guesstimate time to start studying would be right about...NOW.

And I say this because my fifth year wasn't a breeze. Maybe it seemed like it for you, but the number of secret meltdowns and panic attacks I had equated to a lot of bathroom breaks due to increased gut motility. It was only when I was approaching my last two final examinations that I almost got a handle of my time management. But this year, it's different, Barb. I won't just have one examiner, I will have SIX professors sitting on a panel throwing questions at me - and that gives me the chills when I think about it (don't worry, my gut motility isn't affected). But then I think about the time we had to interview Anjali Menon, and the time we went onto BBC AN, and I really feel these small experiences are grooming me towards what the next 8 months hold for me.

But instead of complaining, I will do my best to avoid these panic attacks and mental breakdowns and put my heart and soul into the next eight months academically, podcastly, and table-tennisly. The truth is, Barb, these next eight months is the universe giving me time to have my ducks in a row and honestly, what I really want by June 2018, is a paved path for both of us to create content with no financial burden. So that when I do start working as a doctor, creating content with Desi Outsiders and feminismindia doesn't need any micromanaging from either of us. Ideally, I'd love to have minions running our projects. But humans would do, as long as they speak in high-pitched broken French, wear denim jumpsuits and have twice the energy of a duracell battery.

So, let's make a plan, Stan!

Love,
Meenal