Genetics and Us
I come from a scientific background, with a strong Genetics education. So, if I am to tell you a bit about my family, what better way to start than to introduce the two people whose gene pool I’ve dug into to make me what I am; My parents!
If you have ever believed in the phrase “opposites attract”, then you could give my parents as a glowing example! My dad is one of those quiet, intense types. Speaks little, very down-to-earth, modest to the point of undermining himself; everybody loves him for his sincerity and honesty. My mom is very artistic, very fiery, and very emotional; and coming from a business family background, she also has a business temperament.
My mom and dad have now been together for 50 years and of course, fight all the time!! There is no denying that they are still madly in love with each other, but, as exemplified in the Chinese philosophy of yin and yangbeing two opposing but complementary forces which exists in every object in the universe, he is the yin for her yang!!
I am a mixed bag of my parents’ traits! It is my father in me who grits his teeth when my mother becomes emotional and cranky with me. It is my mother in me who stamps her foot when my dad gives me his famous discipline speeches.
Since I have both yin and yang in me, I decided to find the counter yang and yin. I won’t say much about the success of that since we’ve been married only 10 years. All I can say is that the hubs has the business temperament and the enthusiasm of my mother and the awful, awful obsessive, methodical attitude of my dad!!! So, we fight all the time!!
Okay, so the respective yins and yangs met and it looks like they totally cancelled out each other since our son, Big A, has a mind totally of his own, which we had no way of controlling or understanding when he first started exerting his personality at the tender age of one. Well, actually to me, it’s simple; whenever he displays his temper and stubbornness, he’s behaving just like hubs, and whenever he comes to me with an armful of books asking me to read to him, he’s my son! The hubs has other views; whenever Big A makes a witty comment, he’s the hubs’ son and whenever he watches cartoons with his mouth half-open, he’s my son!!! So, we fight about that too!!!
Again, our second son, Little a, has a distinct personality of his own; and that we again still have not understood!! Little a has a calm, sweet temperament that both of us clamor to own; but he also has an exceptionally mulish attitude when he does not want to obey certain rules, that we both hasten to disclaim as ever existing in any corner of our respective family trees!
Ultimately, both of us agree that genetics plays but a small part in the shaping of our sons’ personalities; they are equally crafted by their environment; Nature versus nurture, if you will! We understand all too well that trying to categorize our sons into being ‘the smart one’ or ‘the studious one’ or ‘the troublemaker’ are labels that they do not neatly fit into; each has his own set of endearing qualities, but each also carry their load of eccentricities to catch us unawares. It’s a rollercoaster ride that we undergo every day and we can’t wait, with an open mind and an eager heart, to find out what lies at the next bend!
Roshni was born and brought up in Calcutta and is now living in California. Her two rambunctious boys, Big A, age 8, and Little a, age 4, are the main subjects of her blog and she can be found tweeting away (@RoshniAaMom) in her free time (you may well ask, what free time?!)