We give birth to them. We teach them how to eat, speak and walk. They grow up under our roof in front of our eyes. And yet, they sometimes behave as though they are strangers. Their innermost thoughts and feelings, become a well hidden treasure trove, which we have no access to. Our feelings and thoughts become a complicated map which they can’t interpret.
I remember when I was in school there was this girl and her kid sister who used to bully everyone in our rickshaw especially one of my friend. These girls belonged to an affluent family. The elder one was beautiful, intelligent, outspoken and had all traits of a confident teenager. While my friend and even me, we were shy, introvert, average students having all traits of lack of confidence
In India when most of us know two or three languages and are equally comfortable in all, I find it strange that when confronted with a little bundle of joy who doesn’t understand any language at all, we almost unconsciously slip into our native tongues while we coo and croon over the little one. From hard nosed rational adults we suddenly start talking in our own native tongues, even gibberish at times, which is even more ridiculous because all sound would seem equally strange and incomprehensible to the infant in question!
My day begins with a question and ends with one. On an average day, I have to endure an onslaught of around thirty formidable questions and the day when I am more fortuitous, it might go upto fifty. These questions can neither be avoided nor can I beat around the bush to avoid or delay them. Instead, it demands attention and seeks immediate intervention. The lines above is in context to the deluge of questions being poured on me and my best half (my husband JB) by our only son AB.
“Thank God man cannot fly and lay waste the sky as well as the earth.”, was a quote by Henry David Thoreau, who lived in the eighteenth century.
Parents are supposed to be role models for their kids, but how often kids teach us valuable lessons too! I attended a parent-teacher interaction at my elder one’s school yesterday. His exams had just got over and the discussion would be about the child’s performance and other things. When my turn came, I introduced myself and the teacher’s eyes kind of lit up when I mentioned my child’s name.
Rain, rain, go away,
Come again another day
Little Johnny wants to play.
This nursery rhyme though part of the repertoire is not really meaningful for us living in India because we only experience seasonal rains.
We, as parents, think that it is us who teach the children the nuances of life. We go about reading parenting books while we are expecting and smugly think that we won’t be making any of the “mistakes” we think the other parents are making. In our heads, our child is the best behaved, well mannered, widely read and a delightful child.