January Photo Theme: People P2

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Parenting is the most crucial mode of life. Once our children are born, our priorities revolve around our children. There are many rules about how to bring them up but only you know as a parent how much you love your children. This Photo is one such example.

Motherhood

Being a mother is not an easy job. you need to be good at everything.

Christmas holidays have just begun and I am already running out of ideas to keep my daughter busy.

From snacks, to clothes and crafts everything needs to be different from the last one… else I’m doomed.

So, today I came up with the idea of mehendi, the Indian tattoo, which is made of a herbal paste. hands decorated have to wait for a couple of hours until its dry for the beautiful color. one-way to keep my daughter to stay still for a few hours… will post the pic of the colourful hand tomorrow.

School Woes!

 So… Long time huh!. OK I have said this umpteen times in my previous posts. Before I crave for anymore coffee, before I’m distracted by all the mess around, I’m straight away getting to the point.

For the past 2 months, I have been running in and out of a school for my daughter. It is very important for the child to go to a right school and to be led into a prospective direction of his/her future. Yeah right! Our parents didn’t think about it but we still get to our future. That was a different age altogether.

Before, it would take minimum of 30 years for the difference between generations, but these days, generations change every 2 years.

It was my dream to go to that school, my parents didn’t try hard or should I say, they didn’t try at all. I have gone through a lot at a very young age, so I guess I could think a little better for my age at 13. I would observe my peers and had selected a few schools in my mind for higher secondary education. I had 3 schools close to my residence [I priority], which my parents could afford [II Priority] and I would fit in [well, that wasn’t a priority].

It’s a different story today. What counts is how famous is the school [reasons right or wrong doesn’t matter – how many people recognize the name of the school – that’s I priority] The fees you pay has to be in lakhs [II Priority] the parents must be working for a software company [“A multi million dollar company” owned by a school drop out – sorry for being sarcastic] Only then you are considered to be “in the group” of Proud Parents.

My thought for a school was different. I knew that a school like that existed round the corner. I decided it would be that school the day my daughter was born. I chanted the name for four years until she was eligible and sung the goodness of the school to anybody who asked me about which school my daughter would go to.

I couldn’t consider any other school to be as good as it was and still is. Its not that the school has won merits, but for the culture they imbibe. Its not that every student of this school is a doctor or an engineer or an IAS officer [like every leading school boasts about itself of] It is the foundation they lay for every child, for the attitude, the confidence they build in each child to fight the outside world, to face each problem with the same strength as they did with the previous one. They empower each girl and form personalities out of them, they preach to believe in god and respect each one as a human not for his religion or richness, all along with the curriculum. That must be a foundation for a child and not how hard to study and how much to score in the exams and be selfish and greedy in the rat race.

We applied for the seat in this school and attended the interview. All though it went well in there, my daughter’s name didn’t appear on the board for admission. That was the most disappointing moment of my life. I never expected that, we qualified in all terms. So I and my husband would end up at the school office everyday for 2 months, trying to convince the principal that my daughter is an eligible pupil of their school, so did many other parents waiting with me. I took it up as a commitment, for my daughter, for her future. I would be there everyday waiting. Sometimes it was for an hour, sometimes for a whole day. There are days when I have cried inconsolably, taking it up on myself, for not giving my daughter a good future.

 So… We fight all odds, sometimes disappointed and sometimes ready to give up until the last drop of hope and we finally make it. Our daughter gets the admission.

 I pay the fees, collect books and uniform, and attend the induction program. It’s the D day for my daughter, she’s all prepped for the school, my hubby and me as proud parents walk into the school with our daughter. We find the classroom, smiling all the way [in pride to be a part of such a prestigious school] I stand there for a moment waiting for my daughter to move forward, then give her a small nudge to get in to the class, I feel her clutching hard onto my hands, I turn to look at her, her eyes have welled up waiting for her tears to overflow. She looks at me and waaahhhhhhhhhh….. She starts crying not wanting to go into the class. She looks at me and yells “I don’t like this school; I want to go back to Eurokids [the play home she had been to for 2 years].

 I stand there with mixed feelings of anger, sorry, scared as if losing a battle.

I’m Proud to be a Full Time Mom

My co-sister had a baby last week. It’s her second child. Both, Husband and wife are Dentists. They have their own clinics. She had this baby so her first daughter has a company, as she and her husband work odd hours and cannot spend much time with their daughter.  Now, what kind of logic is this? I wonder?

It never made sense to me. When I question her about it, her answer is even baffling. She says, she can afford a good living for the children then why not and both of them would have each other a company. She worked so hard and spent a lot of time in her clinic so she could setup her career before she can take a break for the second child. After a few months, she would return and still have the same patients to come back to. She had problems with her mother in law [like everybody else does] so she would spend a lot of time at the clinic.

Her daughter was at school for the first half of the day and the next half at her grandmother’s [mother’s mother… they are the real saviors]. Actually, her mother is the one who’s mothering her children. The child would meet her dad early in the morning when they are busy getting ready and by the time he comes back, she sleeping. Same with the mother except for the lunch sad part is they work on weekends too. When I raise this as an objection, my co-sister says she is working hard to earn enough money to give them a better life.

For me having money to raise children is one thing, but the responsibility and time involved is more important than money. Having another baby is like dividing Love, Priorities and Time and depriving all these things just because you can afford them financially is something that I can’t digest.

Children grow up with the nourishment of their parents love, support, and behavior, not by wearing branded nappies or expensive toys they play with.

Though my Co-sister’s daughter is good child, she already has mood swings; [by the way, she’s just 5] very easily gets annoyed, sets her preferences and has unique demands. Both parents pamper her as they get very little time to spend with and don’t want to waste time punishing her for her mistakes.

I don’t say all women have to sit at home and take care of the kids, but children must be their no 1 priority. A mother should spend as much time she can with her children not money. Nobody in this world can understand and reciprocate in a right way at the right time to a child than a mother. You must be present at every occasion to appreciate them when they are right and discipline them when they are wrong, and it is very important in the early stage of their life.

Children of this century are growing up so fast, by the time they are five, they know how to order Pizzas over the phone. It’s not funny. They are keen to learn new things; they are in hurry to take life head on. I guess with only thorough monitoring and helpful guidance would make a better child, and not the costly diapers and modern nannies you hire.

Being a full time mom was a tough decision, it brought a huge financial crunch to my life. But then I learn t the value of money. I learnt the value my time. While I whined for hours that I’m not being productive, my daughter taught me a wonderful lesson. I learnt the biggest lesson of my Life that I’m Important, my presence, my existence does make a difference to somebody I’m happy to stay at home and wait for my little daughter to come home and find me there for all her needs, for all her joy and sorrows, for her queries and confusions. I’m proud that I’m the one she looks back to and depend upon.

I’m proud to be a full time mother.

Welcome Birds!

DK wants to have a dog, a Golden Retriever. I hate that idea. He said he would train the dog so it won’t litter around the house. And my FIL is a vet. Its not just poop I’m talking about, it’s like another member. It needs constant attention; somebody has to stay at home all the time to take care of its basic necessities like its diet, grooming and poop walk, and stuff… which I’m sure will be upon me. I have experienced it all when I had a Pomeranian for seven years. So it’s a big NO from my side. I suggested Fish. DK doesn’t agree with me, coz, he’ll have to clean the tank and I remember once, he cleaned the tanks and the next day all the 19 fishes were dead. LOL.

My sis wanted to buy caged love birds for Nim. I was so against it. I don’t like to be locked up, then why have something, especially birds that are symbol of peace and freedom locked up in my home. That’s definitely a no no. I want my daughter to learn the good things in world; animals should be looked up with compassion and love not brutality.

While all these discussions were going on, I received an SMS from a friend about providing water to the birds and animals as the temperature is rising day by day. So, I talked to my daughter about making a small Bird pool on the terrace, as we have lot of birds in our neighboring trees, Dhruva came up with the idea of placing some grains along with it, and so we can foster feed the birds. We came to a conclusion that these birds would be Nim’s pets from now on…

So we placed a small bowl of water and another filled with grains. And the wait began. It took five long days to attract the birds and Nim had already given up. And the first member of the club is a pigeon. Nim was so thrilled and so was I.

Three Years… Three Cheers…

My daughter completed 3 years.

It’s been so quick, I am still trying to lose my pregnancy weight and she is already 3. She is the cutest baby in the whole world [its every mother’s notion].

She is well behaved, understanding, a little adamant and lot naughty. She is more of a friend to me. I don’t hide things from her, while I know most of the things I say goes bouncing over her head, but she behaves like she understood everything.

She is like a mirror to me. She reacts the same way as I do. She has all my good qualities and some bad ones too. I am happy when I see the good ones and I get a little apprehensive when I see the bad ones. But, I correct her and myself  immediately. I am a little strict with her as everybody else in the family pampers her way too much.

Her upbringing is planned. It’s not for today; it’s something that I want to imbibe in her, like the way it was done with me. I don’t like to hide things from her, at the same time; I want her to know things as per her age and her thought process. I answer all her questions promptly and am truthful as much as needed. I’m doing my best, but there are times when I feel I could have been better.

Nimisha was never a trouble maker, even as a baby, she had a routine from the beginning. She wasn’t a messy child when she started walking. If I recall it was never her growing days, it was me growing as a mother. I mean, she never troubled me with anything. For example, I started with a ‘Every 2 hour feeding plan’ form the day she was born and she had no problem with it. We started a solid food diet from the 4th month and she had no indigestion problem. I started her potty training when she was a month old [well potty training is a process… starting from scheduled timings to using the loo] and she followed it from the very next day. She has been so co operative in every step we took together. It was me who had problem accepting the new role. I was the one who was getting used to motherhood. Nimisha always behaved like an obedient student learning everything she was being taught.

My cousins have beautiful and well mannered children. When I hear stories from my cousins, about their methods of upbringing of their children, I get psyched up. They have so many rules and a lot of restrictions of what their kids do and don’t. I sometimes feel I’m not being as good a mother they are and I sometimes also feel that the child is not being what he/she is supposed to be. They are just acting upon their mother’s instructions, portraying to be nice and well behaved, deep inside they might want to do something, what a regular kid would do.

I never stop my child from playing in the sand, I never stop her from writing on the walls, I don’t restrict her from eating chocolates and don’t thrust fruits and vegetables into her mouth whether she like it or not. I tell her what is right and what is wrong and what a good girl would do in that situation. She grasps it immediately. There is no effort, it is easily put across.

I let her make her decision, but I make the list from what she has to make a choice, most of the times, I am asked what the point is? Well, the point here is, letting her know that I am here to guide her in making her selection and letting her know, what is the difference between good and the bad, between ‘Want’ and “Necessity’. I might be wrong in many ways, but its working with my daughter.

I hope I will grow up to be a good mother; my daughter has been already…

Off To School!!!

My daughter has started school. After all the panic attacks, anxiety and emotional setbacks, I am getting into the routine.

It was a very strange experience to me. My daughter was so happy about going to school and here I was scared and terrified about how she would take care of herself. Obviously though there are teachers and attendants, she is the one who has to adjust to that environment. She has to adapt to the change. I wasn’t sure if she can do it. But, for her, the transit was so easy.

Parents had to accompany the children on the first 2 days. By the way, she goes to Eurokids [a reputed play school in India] my husband dropped us at the school and waved at us while we went in. We were received by the school head Ms. Nayana. The attendants at the door, helped Nimisha take off her sandals and her bag. They led us to a room where a few kids with their parents were playing with the toys around. I was a little nervous. I was nervous because, I wondered how my daughter would behave, how she would conduct herself. Could she express if she had to use the toilet, yes she can talk but, would she speak out about it was my doubt. [Of course it’s too much to ask from a 2 and a half year old kid]

Mostly it was mothers who accompanied the kids. Almost all the kids were shy and sat with their mom, but my daughter went around the room, as if she knew this place from a very long time. She picked up the toys she liked, sat in a comfortable corner and started playing. She actually didn’t need me at all. She was so different from other children there. She was actually the youngest among all. She was so cheerful all through the session; a few mothers complimented me too.

As the class begin, she did all that her teacher said and did and never felt out of place. She sang the prayer, helped her teacher with clearing the toys, she sat with her teacher to listen to the story, she washed her hand and sat down and ate her snacks without any mess. I just sat there and watched her. All the anxiety and fear vanished and big smile dawned on my face all through the session.

The teachers conducted a small activity to know each other. They asked all the children to sit down in a circle and asked each one of them to tell their name and the person accompanied them. While the other children sat with their parents and were being prompted to tell their names, my daughter was sitting with one of her teacher, so when it was her turn she did tell her name but when asked for the name who she was accompanied, she thought for a moment and said ‘amma’ and a huge laugh broke out in the class. Though it was funny, I felt proud.

She is potty trained, and we don’t use diapers. I was a little worried if she could express her needs, which she did diligently. She came up to me and told me she wanted to use the loo. I prompted her, to her teacher, so she could know whom to address and they asked the attendant to help her out. I was completely confident that my daughter is ready to face the world [yes… her play school is her current world] I felt so proud and happy about my daughter’s behavior. I sat there and watched my budding daughter bloom. That was the happiest moment for me [after the day she was born].