Our 11-year-old son is studying in a Boarding School since last year. Why we chose a Boarding School for our only son? Well, I wrote about our reasons for doing so on Blogadda here.
I remember, exactly around this time, last year, our home was buzzing with discussions about Boarding Schools. While KG, my better half, and I were all excited about this new journey, AG, our sonny boy experienced an emotional yo-yo. One minute he was all thrilled and the next moment his face was clouded with doubts. And this continued for a while but when we got the appointment letter from the school, he was very clear and his reaction was a “NO”!
This made us do the reality check and we weighed the pros and cons of sending our only child far away from us. We had a week to decide before giving our final decision to the school. These 6 days were the toughest days for me and KG. There was an intense battle between the head and the heart. Finally, the dialogue from 3 Idiots, which somehow kept reverberating in my head, “darwaze pe gaadi khadi thi, thodhi si himmat kar leta to zindagi kuch aur hoti” decided for us.
While it was sorted between the two of us, how to convince AG without forcing our decision on him was a challenge. And the very next day an opportunity presented itself in front of us.
We had a get together at home the previous night when KG had made a new salad. Since, we religiously follow these 2 rules on the dining table, AG informed me that he’d not be able to eat the salad as there were already a lot of things on his plate. I knew the real reason was his reluctance to try the new salad. I chuckled and agreed.
Next day, I made the same salad for lunch. He gingerly tried it and simply loved it so much so that he took 3 helpings of the same. After lunch, we had a chat which reads like this…
Me : Why are you not keen on the Boarding School?
He : I wouldn’t like it.
Me : How can you say so? Have you experienced the life at Boarding before? Have you heard/ seen anything about it?
He : No
Me : Last night, you did not taste the new salad and today when you tried it, you loved it. When you have never experienced the Boarding life, how can you say that you wouldn’t like it?
With some more gyan from us, he understood our reasoning and agreed.
Last week, we dropped him back to the school for the new session, after his 3 months vacation.
As the vacations were coming to an end, the sinking feeling in my heart deepened. And the child was excited at the prospect of going back. He prepared the list of things he wanted to carry back, gave me numerous reminders and double checked all his bags.
When we finally landed at the school, we were amazed. AG met his friends so warmly, they were hugging and doing hi-5, excitedly discussing their last year’s percentage, grabbing the best bed in the dormitory, making their beds and arranging the clothes and toiletries in their cupboards with such precision and expertise. There was so much of cheerful banter… the teachers, the matrons, the aayajis (helps) were so happy to see the kids back…
Seeing all this made me think that sometimes things that seem to be the hardest turn out to be cake walk especially as far as parenting is concerned. Kids might protest the most but once they are put in a situation they adapt much better than us. Also I remember reading this, “we can’t be afraid of change. You may feel very secure in the pond that you are in, but if you never venture out of it, you will never know that there is such a thing as an ocean, a sea. Holding onto something that is good for you now, may be the very reason why you don’t have something better” and also that you won’t know until you try…
A former pharmaceutical professional-turned-soft-skills facilitator for corporates and mother of a 11 year old, Shilpa Garg blogs at http://shilpaagarg.blogspot.in/