Ask any mom and they will vouch for the fact that their child is the naughtiest kid around. I am no different. Staying at such close quarters with a toddler, you start to wonder if you alone got stuck with a particularly difficult one.
I have had many parents coming to the hospital just to know if there was something wrong with their child. I once had a mom who went on and on about her son’s antics and then suddenly she comes close and her voice drops to a whisper. ‘Does he have any problem?’ And I’m trying to figure out what she’s saying and then as if to explain she draws imaginary circles around her ears and says ‘I mean like mental? ‘It took all the self control I possessed to not laugh and explain that she had a wonderfully normal and playful child.And then there are the others who want to scan their child’s head just to see if it’s all in place. Sometimes no amount of reassurance will do.
My first son can be very trying.He’s at that stage where your eyes need to follow him every second of the day.Inspite of that he manages to escape my vision every now and then and do enough things to drive me up the wall like say randomly throw a couple of things out the balcony every few days. (We live on the 4th floor). It’s become so common that the watchman now collects these objects( toys mostly thankfully for now!)and keeps them on top of our car. Since word spreads faster than light, I worry that people in the other flats might come to know and think I’m not watching the kids properly.Hence the balcony remains shut. Inspite of that I found my slipper missing the other day. And I ask my son ‘ where are my slippers’ and very innocently he looks out the bedroom window. My husband ( very Sherlock Holmes like) then concludes there is a slab somewhere there and proceeds to use his phone and angulate it to take a pic of the said slab. That’s when we realise some toys have also been missing and so also his playschool uniform! ( is he trying to hint at something?)and so now that window and every other possible window is shut too.
But just when you start to give up on them and wonder if they are maybe I dunno umm…slow ?! and maybe just can’t understand , they will do something incredible like recite all the months of the year in order! How do they even manage that in playschool?! The only thing I have managed to teach is to clean up after playing and since some of it is being thrown out I probably haven’t taught that too well either.
Kids!! Hard to live with but even harder to live without!!
And here comes march!The one month which puts me into ‘introspectory mode’. I’m born in march so this is the month I evaluate my year, my plans ,goals achieved and I always fall short and that puts me in a foul mood. Well how that’s changed!! My second son is born in march so the month is now spent planning his birthday and ‘introspecting’ his year and milestones!
One year ago he was so tiny and fragile I was scared burping him and now he’s already becoming too heavy to carry!
I have grown too. It’s been a year of lessons learnt and new challenges.We learn so much by reading and watching movies but we learn far more by just living.
So much 31 years has taught me and so much left to learn. So much I just want to pass on. Here are a few titbits I’d like my kids to know-
1. Always stand up for yourself- while being diplomatic can win friends, you will get nowhere unless you do this.All the good things ( read satisfaction,peace, happiness)come only to those who truly stand up for themselves. There have been times I haven’t stood my ground and I’m not proud of it. The one thing I want my kids to learn is also this.Know what you stand for. And be bold enough to defend it.
2. Love yourself- so cliched right? And yet so difficult.I know what your thinking. Of course I love myself. But do you really? Really really? Every bit of you? Your personality, your every physical attribute no matter how flawed, your thoughts, your laugh, your walk,your jokes.Everything! I hope you do!Because the day you do this you’l reach a whole new level of confidence and sexiness!!Be your favourite always!
3. Listen to your conscience- everything in this world changes. So will your teachers, the songs you listen to,your friends,religion itself seems to be evolving.But your conscience always knows what’s right. Never visit the grey areas.Never make a decision based on anything else. Keep your heart free from corruption. That will turn you into honourable and noble men, the kind this world really needs!
4. Never hold back- life is for the living and if you really try, reality can be vastly more interesting than pure fantasy.Give, love, share without any caution. There is really no reason everything should be returned in equal measure. Own this life!
5. Judge less- I say this because it’s not possible to not judge at all. ( lol sadly!) Atleast try not to. Just as your pointing fingers, someone is doing the same back at you! ( and God is most definitely laughing at your expense)
6. Read- there will never be a dull moment on earth as long as there are books to read. Read. Read. Read.
7. Find humor in everything – the worries and trials of the world become so much lighter if u learn to sit back and laugh about it all. It also gives you perspective.
8. And oh yes. And since this is for the kids. I cannot stress on this point enough. This beats all other points. Always always listen to your mom😅
So I was watching this talk show koffee with Karan with some new upcoming Bollywood stars.There was this one episode with an actress named jacqueline Fernandes. She s definitely not my fave actress but something that she said hit me. (Strange I shd get my eureka moment here of all places!)
So she’s generally a chirpy person .. actually alwaysss chirpy!!Impossibly always chirpy!
And so then when Karan points out this endearing and sometimes annoying habit of hers, she says something that goes to the effect of-I know people mistake me for a bimbette coz I’m always smiling. But the truth is this world already has its share of problems and I don’t want to burden everyone I see or meet with mine so I just try to look happy. That really hit me!
I have a friend ammu who is just like that. Smiling and happy all the time! I know that she has her lows too but she never shows it.I never realised that it takes effort. Till I tried it today I could not possibly fathom how difficult it is to do it.
I got up this morning in one of my worst moods.Nothing could help. Forget making conversation ,just smiling was difficult enough .So I resolved now on that I must genuinely try to be cheerful no matter what or at least try not to spread negativity. For now I seem to be failing ( my poor kids)but hey at least I’m trying(one fake laugh at a time)!😀This piece is dedicated to ammu and strong women like her who make lives pleasant and lift up spirits!
Ask any doctor and they will tell you the hardest patients they have to treat are their loved ones ,in particular ‘the parents ‘ .Having laid down pretty much every ground rule for the first 25 years, the sudden role reversal does not go well with them.
So I generally limit advice knowing how futile it is and how it will mostly go unheard anyway.
Just the other day, my diabetic (not under control)mom was checking her sugars on the glucometer
mom: My fasting sugar is 146 !*smiles proudly
me: WHat?! You know that’s high right?
mom: What are you saying? Our Doc told 126 I’m certain. This is clearly borderline!
me: yeah mom ,that’s for random. This is fasting.And that’s definitely not borderline!
mom: Are you sure? But do you know how much x Aunty’s is?
me: Yes I do and that’s why she is on insulin ma!
mom: Mine is so much better! Thank God.*rushes off to make a few calls and share the good news.
The madness is not restricted to just home but pretty much my whole family. The said x Aunty drinks this concoction to cure diabetes made with a whole lot of honey in it. She claims that it helps and she got it off Facebook. I question the authenticity only to be told that there are 4500 likes for the post so it must be surely right. I shudder each time I think of 4500 diabetic people actually taking this honey laden drink with dreams of getting cured!
Facebook and WhatsApp have done their bit to spread gibberish. The end to end encryption making it impossible to trace actual sources !If you have a family like mine they will not only believe every message but also share it extensively out of goodwill.I don’t know how many of you read the watsapp message on stroke which gives you an order to prick your fingers and earlobes one by one to stop its progression.This again was widely circulated by my family along with other pearls of wisdom!!
Well, we can laugh at them all we want but we also know in this case the most difficult patient to treat is also the one patient we just can’t do without!
Change is good. Change is necessary.Be the change. Change is the only constant.
I’m probably living proof of how quickly one can change. Maybe it’s the piscean skill to adapt or maybe it’s the need to be accepted but looking back even say 5 years ago, I can say I’m almost another person altogether.
I’v changed in the way I dress,the way I talk,the music I listen to,the kind of people I befriend and that’s only talking about on the outside. I’d like to believe that change has made me a bit more patient,more understanding of people in general and little calmer. So yes change has done me a world of good.
But just the other day I met family and we were talking about how different my dressing sense is now. I honestly believe one must dress in Rome as the Romans do but I would also like to believe an Egyptian dressed as one would be equally welcome.
So then today I was thinking how we sometimes just never question change.We do it unknowingly or in an effort to please without really thinking whether it’s in line with what we like or stand for. Women especially are expected to merge in with a new family and so sometimes we just lose our true selves or originality in the process.
But we must question change and do it only when the reason to do so makes sense..to us!!.Don’t change if it changes the essence of who you are. Or else you’ll be left looking into a mirror at someone you hardly know!
I was talking to an old friend the other day and we were discussing about how one particular friend of ours had hardly changed. We also realized that she was the happiest!I don’t think she’s the type to resist change but she also isn’t one to change for no actual reason. She is just generally transparent about who she is as a person and is someone who is extremely comfortable in her skin.
Make jokes an laugh at them? So what. No-one should have to stifle a laugh.Like working out? Never give up on something good. Like to read? Then do it still.Some things u have to make time for!Do you like video games?play away.Do you like crazy music?So what.You are entitled to have your own taste.Do u like to dress only in some colors?Your body is your palette!
I’m not saying don’t chAnge at all or change all the time. Change if u must but do it consciously and wholeheartedly.And more importantly change only if u must! Sometimes you ‘ll be surprised to know you were just fine and equally loved the way you were in the first place!
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