Parenting by example

I follow this blog quite religiously. The thoughts mentioned, topics discussed, are really something I have long believed in, but have been losing touch with, lately. Thanks to the adult world. I’m glad I found the blog.

This particular post rung a bell because it is something I’m going through now, while parenting my 3.5 yr old. I want to ask about the dichotomy that exists in our behaviours while teaching to our children, and while practising in reality, in our lives.

Whenever I teach something, any value to Anay, I try and teach him what I practice in real life. And, if it is violence I practice, I teach violence to him. Let me explain with an example.

Anay is a very soft, shy and a little coward kind of a child. Even at this small an age, his general tendency is to stay away from trouble/problems/conflicts than get into them. So, if there is a kid who’s pushy, or overly-active, he would rather stay at a hand’s distance than go and play with him. I don’t think it is generally the case. I’ve mostly seen kids enjoying such excessive-energy-centers. They would love to break toys, hit each other. etc. I hope you got the image and the point. So now, when Anay started going to play-school, which starts at a tender-age of 2 yrs, I may remind you. There was this child, extremely pushy, hitting kids. Anay would often come home telling us about Amog hitting him. I don’t want my child picking fights unnecessarily. But, I definitely don’t want him to be the child hiding behind the bush to avoid bullies. So, my teaching to him is ‘Don’t pick a fight, but don’t get back if another starts it. Try telling the teacher if it helps. But, if it persists, hit back.’

This is precisely what I’ll do if I were in a situation. I know he may have to face trouble. There maybe times when he starts hitting a guy much bigger than him in capacity (which will mostly be the case since he’s extremely skinny). But, it is important for the child to know that he has to fend for himself. There will not be a Mom, or Papa, or Amma or Daadu, or teacher to save him. He’ll have to learn to save himself.

To others, I am a mother teaching violence to her child. Am I wrong ? What would you do in a similar situation? Is there anything else that I could have done than preach violence to him?

Social or Fake?

Dear Diary,

As I lay in bed, trying to find a new activity every day, to pass my time, I think of people who didn’t call me. I don’t care much for the social, formality-sake calls, but I worry about the ones those I expected and didn’t come. A particular person, a close one, who was sure to call, called but not to me, but to family. I wonder why. Did I say something that hurt her? I think back to our last meeting, our last conversation. Ohh! I think I hurt her. But, I didn’t intend to. I was purely citing that example to share my pain, on her situation, on her pain. Of my fears. Ohh Dear! 😦 I feel sad to have hurt her. But, how could she take me wrong. I was just sharing. 😦

I remember all such past incidences, when I lost people. People who were important to me, but whom I hurt in my naivety. Just because I said something. But then, it never is just one instance. I am sure it was more. There must have been episodes before that, and it was just the last nail in the coffin. I don’t realize my mistake until it reaches this last, when the people just snap. Snap the relationship. Snap the contact. I am left with no choice but to let go. It hurts. It hurts even after many years. The fact that I remember all of them, even till today, proves that it always stays.

I wonder. I wonder how people let go of relations so easily. As I grow on in my adult life, I realize how difficult it is to create the same, easy relations that we used to have in childhood, in teenage life. Hence, I don’t want to let go of those relationships at all. There was lot of time and energy that went in building them. And just a misunderstanding, or a disagreement is not enough to waste it all. We don’t have the time any more to create those kind of solid bonds and understanding. The lifestyles, the complex living conditions that we live in, don’t leave any scope for it.

Or maybe, they do understand it and still think its not worth it.

I like people. I like talking to people. Exchanging thoughts, philosophies. Talking about my random ideas and their responses to it. I feel for their pain. I feel their happiness equally. That makes me a social person. But, I would rather call myself an open person. I don’t hide my thoughts, my problems, my views. I don’t poke into your problems, your lives either. I try not to. I specifically try not to pry into your personal lives. I just try and be there, if you need to talk to me. As a friend.

I wish I could just be the same old person I was. In a circle of a few friends. People, who knew me, understood me, and didn’t judge me. If  I hurt them, they would lash back at me than give up. The adult world is fake. Social means fake. Where you say things to please people. To be in their good books. Agree with them no matter what you feel.

When I reach such points, I so feel that Tarun is so perfect a person. He’s considered an asocial guy. Doesn’t talk much to people. Concentrates on his work, most of the time. He likes to participate, but gets involved in it just that much. No friends, and yet a whole gamut of friends.

I don’t think I could ever be that way. Maybe I never should be that. I’ll just be what I am. Unrepentant. And stop judging myself for it. Before I ask people to stop judging me, I should stop judging myself.

Dear God, be with me!

-Hope

Passing time

As I bide my time, trying to rest my knee, I’m trying to catch up on things I usually dream about. Like reading a novel endlessly, without any interruptions of cooking or poo-poos, etc etc. Like watching the movies on Romedy Now, whatever catches my fancy.

So, that’s exactly what I have been doing. And frankly, they aren’t as much fun as they are when I’m busy with the routine. The little stealing-out-time episodes are what made my journey of a book, even more memorable 😛 🙂 But, nonetheless, these are memorable too.

I read ‘Gora’ by Rabindranath Tagore. It is not a book I would usually pick from the book-stall, just because its synopsis is too much of sociology than a spicy plot. It was gifted to Tarun by his Bengali English teacher. So, there it stood, in my library. Hence, now I decided to pick it up. And, what a read! I would never say that anyone who’s new to reading should read this book. It’ll make you go off-reading completely. Phew! It is so heavy-read. But, if you know how to sail through a novel, concentrating on the parts you enjoy and deflecting those lengthy descriptions, that put you off, then Gora is an amazing book. I thoroughly, completely, totally enjoyed this mesmerizing tale from the Independence Days. It doesn’t talk of the Indian-English conflicts that is usual in the books on Indian Independence, but it rather talks about the conflicts that go on in your heart, with respect to Religion, Society, Country and your Heart. It is such a beautiful depiction of self-realization. Of coming of age. Of how we feel we know all about the adult world, and w we know what we believe in, and yet, as time passes on, our values, our beliefs are questioned, and we come around them. To create new beliefs, to make some new values, and to understand the underlying concepts of all these values and traditions.

I got a glimpse of the learned class of Bengal, the class which is often considered the best of the lot in Indian Literate Society. It was very new, deeply moving, and quite spiritual. Another way of meditation, I would say, is reading this book.

And, once I had finished this, I was hooked on to Zindagi Gulzar Hai. A Pakistani serial, starring Fawad Afzal Khan. I had been stuck on the actor since Khoobsurat revealed it to the Indian audience, and I can’t get enough of the actor. I have seen quite some serials/telefilms of him, by now. And this time-off gave me the perfect excuse to catch some more of him. Acting meets good-looks. It’s a treat watching him. And, it’s great watching Pakistani serials. They are so so different from the Indian serials, and even the American rom-coms, thrillers, etc that I have watched. Unbelievable but true, they actually make the traditional values seem perfect. In ZGH, the protagonist girl, who belongs to a very modest family, has worked hard to earn her way forward in life, gets married to this class fellow, rich-handsome-flirt-intelligent-but-careless boy. And, the values her Mother gives her are what we all have been given. Of taking care of the husband, of MIL, FIL, SIL etc. Of not expecting but trying to make a family bond with them. No matter how they behave. The serial is such a beautiful representation of the conflicts that come when a girl gets married into another household. Nothing hyped. Nothing overdone. Pure, regular, day-to-day incidents that actually happen to all of us. And, how her humble nature, always-giving attitude helps her win all them over. How she and her husband overcome their individual problems, personality traits to make the family. And, it shows that a woman doesn’t need to be a housewife, to be a perfect woman. She doesn’t need to be a husband’s servant to make a good wife. She can have difference of opinion. She should stick to her stand of viewpoint. But, then she can also be the loving, caring wife who takes care of her husband and family, despite there being a house-maid to take care of all the work. She cooks, she cleans-up after him, and does all that just to make her space in his life.

It is not important to do all that to make your space in your husband’s life, but doesn’t it add a personal touch. In this age, when we are pushing towards a house-maid to get away from the mundane tasks of cooking, cleaning, taking care of the child, etc, the serial makes doing all this yourself, beautiful. It makes it a choice than a responsibility. And that made it all beautiful to me. I am really surprised to see such a mature serial as a soap-opera from Pakistan. As Indians, our mentality is always derogatory. But then, like any other country, it too has some very nice points to teach you. A way of life that teaches you the values, that you’re so bent on unlearning.

Tough Times

Dear Diary,

Tough times are on, just as they were anticipated. Starting from 28th September, when I got another of my wisdom tooth extracted, then 4th October, when I finally got my knee surgery done, and to the present, 14th October, when it has been 10 days and am still on pain-killers to pass through my day.

Wisdom-tooth, as much as I wanted to delay it, it had reached the point where I could do nothing to avoid it. Since the date for the knee surgery was not yet decided, I decided to go for the tooth, and get one problem out of the picture. Turns out it was a good decision. I got my stitches removed a day earlier than the usual stipulated time. They were removed earlier because the stipulated day, I was going in for the next surgery.

It doesn’t get freakier than this.

Then, the knee. Well, the knee. A surgery is a big deal in our homeopathy-ayurvedic-anything but allopathy family. And, the only reason for their phobia is because allopathy mostly turns towards medicines leading to side-effects, or a surgery! Whoa! A surgery.

So, it wasn’t easy to get them to understand that I did not believe in the undependable homeopathy. I wanted to go for the regular medicines where I know of the results, and the side-effects in advance. Since, it was a difficult task, I went for the most trusted method- Honesty. I plainly told my MIL one day, while we were on the issue, that I didn’t trust anything else. And, I’ll be going for the surgery, if needed. Surprisingly, she didn’t say anything against it. She accepted my decision right then. Perhaps, because she understands that healing is a lot about your trust on the doctor and the methodology. So, that was one problem solved.

We went to quite many doctors to get their advices, to be sure that surgery was the only way forward, to understand the after-affects. But, as luck would have it, in case of ligaments, most of the prognosis depends on the MRI. So, all the docs gave me the same advice – surgery. Then, it just hit me that rather than going for multiple docs, I should go for another MRI, to be sure. And, so I went for the most popular, and most trusted MRI center – Diwan Chand MRI in CP.

And, guess what!? The MRI did bring in some different results.

We took the report to our doctor, whom we had decided for the surgery, Mr Shekhar Srivastav from Sant Parmanand Hospital, Civil Lines, Delhi (reputed for Arthroscopy), that instead of one, I had two problems. Initially, it was only ‘Medial Meniscus Tear’, now I had ÁCL too. The ligament tear. So, initially, it was 20-minute procedure, followed by some casual exercises for a week. Now, it was going to be a 45-minute procedure, with 3-weeks of complete bed rest required. We got this information 3 days before my operation. We were sure of the doctor so there was no panic. But, we didn’t get a chance to surf the net to understand the after-affects.

Now, here I am. 10 days have passed. My doc had started my exercises right from Day 2. I started going for my physio since last friday, so not even 5 days passed since surgery. But, my knee is already getting stiff. Not just my knee, my other muscles are getting stiff because there is no activity that I am able to do. I do my regular exercises, which the doc advised me, but that doesn’t take care of the neck, the hip-joint and so many other muscles which are getting stiff because of inactivity.

This muscle-business, is really tricky and something really to be taken care of. I don’t know how I got into it (of course, because of your ignorance, you dumbhead!!) , but I sincerely hope I get out of it. And, get out of it healthy.

Fingers crossed!

I am aching to get back to work. To my regular days of boring routine life. Which don’t seem so boring and mundane anymore.

Pray for me!