Category Archives: Parenting

Parenting…#7

Catch my latest blog post at http://worldasisee.com/parenting7/

My parents

My parents

Parenting…#6

My parents

My parents

This is my 6th article on things I learnt from my parents. Things, which today, as an adult I realise, is so much responsible, for me being, what I am.

Once I remember coming home from school, being very upset. I had a fight with a friend of mine in school and felt I had no friends in this world (you know as a teenager you feel such crap). My dad saw me and asked me what happened. Now I rarely used to open up about such issues, but that day I did. After venting out my emotions, my dad asked me a simple question “Are you friends with yourself ? Do you love yourself ?” Now of course, in those days when there was no “Secret by Rhonda Byrne”, and such concepts were alien to all of us. I, of course, assumed, that my dad had lost it, and said No. So my dad said “So if you cannot be friends with yourself, if you cannot love yourself, why do you expect someone else to? Do you want your friends to love, what you cannot love?” Now honestly, at that age it made no sense and I was quite upset with him for not understanding my predicament. He then gave me an exercise to do, which at that moment seemed like such a burden. He said “Why not from today, try being your own friend first? Why not write down daily, one reason, why you should love yourself?” By now, I was quite sure my dad was the most insensitive man on earth, who had no idea, how to deal with life and the many problems it had to offer. Anyway, for that moment, the story ended there and my life moved on, and of course I did nothing of that sort.

But then, as I grew up, I was one day in college and was very down about something. Both my parents were in Singapore then and I did not know what to do, and I suddenly remembered his advice. So that day, I took out my diary and wrote down for the first time, one thing I loved about myself and the feeling was exhilarating. I never felt happier in my life. Somehow, I had no idea that I was so great, till I started telling myself . From, that day, started a love affair with myself, which continues till date, and must say the strongest affair, I ever had .

Today, when I come across many friends, who seem to break down and all lost, cause they do not have a man/woman in their life, I realise the value of his words. I have been alone many a times, but never been lonely. I have had my heart broken, but I never felt unloved. Till date, I remain my biggest fan.

So today, when you feel alone, when you feel no one loves you, when you feel time is running out, and you need to settle down with the next “available” person you meet – why not do what my dad taught me? Start a love affair with yourself, and I assure you, never again will you feel the need to be sad again.

My earlier posts on Parenting http://worldasisee.com/parenting-5/

Parenting….#5

My Parents

My Parents

In my series of things I learnt from my parents this is another incident.

I was brought up in a family which was not really very religious. We never had any room for God or any idol of God anywhere in the home. I rarely saw my parents pray and even if they did it was in the privacy of their rooms and not something which others were privy to. However I studied in a convent school like both my parents. Now in a convent school prayers and God play a very essential role. So as a kid, I was not sure what I was supposed to do. Pray or not pray. My parents of course never told me not to do anything, and the firm rule till I was in school was “Your school and teachers are above all, including them, and always right. So do what they say“. So obviously prayers and all were something I did get used to. But this was an incident which happened way before, I actually became influenced into prayers by school (Ideally that happened to all of us when we turned 8 when we started going to the school assembly)

One day, I remember coming home from school, when I was about 7 years old, and I asked my parents “Does God give you things if You pray to Him and does not if you don’t? So that is when my parents introduced me for the first time the concept of God prayers and said this “We do not know if God always answers your prayers if you pray to Him. But we do know one thing, if you are good and always do the right thing, God will grant you what you want, and if you don’t no matter how much you pray, God will never listen. So the best prayer to God is always be a good human being first and then God will always listen to you”

That day I learnt the true meaning of praying to God and loving God – something, which when I see the world today fighting over religion, wish they had learnt too

Conversations with my Ma…# 3

Ma and me

Ma and me

This is my third post on my ongoing series of conversations with my mom…

Now I have this firm belief that parents should always praise their kids, in front of outsiders, even if its blatant lies. Now Ma has no such intentions as for her honesty comes above all. Fine enough but she takes this love of telling people about me to another level altogether. Tell her anything under the sun and Ma can relate it back to me and how useless I am at home. Its like an “Association game”. Say anything and Ma can start her complaints about me :). You don’t believe. Sample these….

Conversation 1 :

Guest : You have a lovely home

Ma : Thank You

Guest : It must be quite a effort you put in to keep it so lovely

Ma : Of course, wish my daughter also appreciated the effort and helped me in keeping the home clean. But she takes exactly 10 minutes to dirty everything, after she is back from office.

Me : Ma??????????????

Ma : What? Am I lying????

END OF CONVERSATION

Conversation 2 :

Guest : How do you spend your days here in Bangalore, now that you have shifted from Calcutta?

Ma : Oh I read,I write, I have friends whom I meet from time to time, I go out and then managing this home also takes a lot of my time

Guest : I can see that. Your house is so clean. It must be a major task keeping it so spic and span and must keep you quite busy.

Ma : Thank you so much. And yes it is. And my daughter ensures that I have no free time all day, lest I get bored. You see I will clean everything and she will take exactly 10 minutes to dirty everything ensuring I have to repeat the entire task again. Thanks to her I can never ever feel bored

Me : Ma??????????????

Ma : What? I am praising you and saying how you are always so thoughtful

END OF CONVERSATION

Conversation 3 :

Guest : Hey tell me something, I just saw all the lovely brass items and the crystals. How long does it take to clean them?

Ma : Oh I spend at least an hour and a half cleaning them daily and then I polish them weekly too. Takes quite a bit of time. Of Course it takes my lovely daughter less than 10 minutes to dirty them again

Me : Ma??????????????

Ma : What? Nowadays it takes you lesser time is it?

END OF CONVERSATION

My home

My home


PS : This is a picture of a part of my home. Between You and me, I do know the efforts taken to keep it this lovely

Conversations with my Ma…# 2

Ma and me

Ma and me

This is the second posting on the ongoing series of conversations with my Mom.

Now usually if am travelling out of my city, I prefer staying in hotels. Being a house-guest is something I preferably avoid as its too much work – you know I have to be on my best behaviour and all? Anyway, there are times when either cause I have been invited or cause if I do not stay with someone it becomes a sticky issue (This is India, and such things play a huge role). Anyway if I ever have to stay as a house-guest, ma goes through those anxiety pangs where she feels if her daughter stays somewhere, the truth of how useless her daughter is will come out (somehow I am unable to convince her that no one expects me to be useful around the house at all, and if they still invite me its at their own risk :P). Anyway, so before any trip Ma usually runs the following do’s and don’ts with me, just before I am leaving. Following is the sample of such a conversation…

Ma : You will be staying with people, so please do not let them realise that you are a slob.

Me : Yes ma, but you know that they do know it, right?

Ma : (ignoring my statement as always) So do you promise to make your own bed every morning before you get out of the rooom?

Me : Yes ma – Check !!

Ma : Will you ensure that after food, you clean your own dishes and try and help them cleaning their’s too?

Me : Yes ma – Check !!

Ma : And please keep your clothes neat and clean and not lying around the room.

Me : Yes ma – Check !!

Me : And do you promise to help people in the kitchen when you are at home and not order people around?

Me : Yes Ma – Check !!

Ma : SO THAT MEANS YOU CAN DO EVERYTHING AROUND THE HOUSE BUT YOU WON’T IN YOUR OWN HOME. WHY? CAUSE YOU HAVE AN UNPAID SERVANT AT HOME CALLED YOUR MOTHER?

Me : D-u-h..d-u-h…ahhh….Ma I am going to miss the flight!!! Bye Ma. See you soon Ma..

AND SCOOT !!!!

END OF CONVERSATION

Conversations with my Ma…# 1

Ma and Me

Ma and Me

Along with my ongoing series about “Parenting” and things I learnt from my parents, starting today I am going ahead with a series on things I do not like about my parents… :).

Now I am perfect is an accepted fact. But then there are certain things I do not like to do. Please note the catchphrase here is “do not like to do” and not “that I cannot do” (hello am perfect and I can do everything). So one of those things which I do not like to do is cleaning my room. Ma on the other hand (and so was Baba), loves everything perfect. It’s like even at 4 am she wants the home to look like some guest will enter any minute. Nevertheless its a regular fight between us. So one day, I come home and Ma is livid at me. Here is a sample of the conversation we had :

Me : Are you upset? (I know she is cause her face is stern and she is not talking to me)

Ma: Yes

Me: Why?

Ma: Am I your maidservant? And that too an unpaid one?

Me: Is that a question which demands an answer from me? (somehow I know whatever I say, it will land me in trouble)

Ma: (Completely ignoring my question) Do you know, I work the entire day to keep this home spic and span and how long does it take for you to dirty everything? Go to your room and see. Everyday I clean this house and you come back and in 10 minutes you manage to make the entire home look like a shit-hole (Read: entire room is just my bedroom where no one ever enters and God knows how it would matter if it is in a mess)

Me : OK…so you cleaned it up. So why you angry?

Ma: Well I thought I potty-trained you when you were two. I was not aware that even at this age I had to go clean the shit my daughter makes. Hence I am angry…

END OF CONVERSATION…

Starting a new Series called “Conversations with Ma/Baba”

My Parents

My Parents

Now some of you guys have reading my posts got this weird idea that my parents are like awesome and you know how lucky I am that they are my parents. Now let’s first set the record straight. Their biggest achievement till date has been that they had me as their daughter – a perfect embodiment of everything sugar and spice and everything nice 🙂
(This is of course withstanding the fact that my dad was awfully talented whose artwork is still admired, whose english was so good that even lawyers would come to him to make him draft their letters, he could paint, he could draw, was an awesome cook, etc and my ma is a fantastic cook to the extent that she can make her own recipes and anyone who eats her food tells her to open restaurants, she can write poems which has got even published, she is a super duper interior decorator and has been called by people to decorate their homes, etc)

So starting today I will start a new series, which will go alongside my “Parenting” series as to how mean and horrible my parents are called “Conversations with Ma” and “Conversations with Baba” and how they basically its me who makes them great…. 😛

Parenting….#4

My parents

My parents

In my series of things I learnt from my parents this is another incident.

The one thing about parents is that its not something they teach you when you were a kid, they often teach you things even when you are an adult, maybe not so much as telling you things, but through their actions. One such incident happened with me some time back with my mother.

Very rarely in my adult life has it happened that my parents have not approved a decision of mine, but some years back I took a decision which my mother felt was a very tough road I chose for myself. She was of the opinion, that being so arduous, it was best avoided as being a concerned mother she did not want me to adopt a life which was hard. Of course in my home, we always voice opinions but not necessarily impose ourselves on someone. However in this case her opinion was so strong that it was quite a surprise. Anyway I still decided to adopt the path I took, as I felt that was the right thing to do. But I did not try and change her mind, as I felt she was right in her views as a concerned parent.

Life carried on, and we both avoided discussing this topic knowing how strongly we both felt about it. As predicted the journey I took was tough, but never did I tell anything to anyone. But over a period of time, I suddenly found her warming upto my decision and opening upto it. There was no reason which had prompted that, as the road I was trudging on was still quite the difficult one. So seeing this change I spoke to a very close friend of mine, who was the only one privy to the difficulties I faced in the path I took, and ma’s reservations. He was also very close to my mom, and so I asked him one day as to why ma suddenly changed her stance and was he an influencing factor. He said he had no role to play, but he would definitely speak to ma and try and gauge why she changed her stance.

After speaking to my mom, my friend came and told me what ma said and this is what she told him. “I know the path my daughter has chosen is tough. I know she will never complain, and I feel its a wrong choice cause its a path which would have a lot of tough obstacles on the way. But I also know, that that is what she wants and what will make her happy, and she will not change her mind cause its against her principles. The least I can do for her as her mother is support her, and try and make the journey a little less difficult. When she comes home, I don’t want her to think she has another battle to fight, in trying to convince her mother. If I am proven right, and my fears of the path being unbearable is true, its going to be the cost of my daughter’s happiness and I would rather I be proven wrong. That’s why I thought let me support her and pray she is right. And if God-forbid she is wrong, at least she won’t have a mother who will tell her ‘I told you so’ but would rather be with her and say its ok, we can surpass this. I want her to know that I am there, even if she is wrong not to judge her but to support her”.

Since I have moved to Bangalore, I have seen parents of my friends for whom their ego surpasses all barriers. They would force their decisions on their kids in the name of ego, past sacrifices done for their kids, how they know best or even society. And if by some miracle the kid, still manages to take a decision against his /her parents, and god forbid he/she fails, the instant reaction of parents is “I told you so” not once realising that their victory was at the cost of the kid’s happiness. That day I realised how lucky I was to have my parents, for whom my happiness was much more important than them coming right

That day I again realised how lucky I am to have my parents. They are not God but they are just what God meant them to be – Parents

My earlier posts on Parenting https://worldasisee.wordpress.com/2011/02/11/parenting-3/

Parenting…#3

My parents

My parents

This is my third article on parenting. This was an incident which happened with me when I was in College. At that point I felt it was funny and my dad was cool. But today when I see many of my friends and associates having a strange relationship with their parents where the parents do not know what the kids do, who they meet, or the fact that kids drink and smoke to glory but at home pretend to be all saintly, I realise what I had got from my parents. A trust which is so rare today among parents and kids. Both my parents had a rule for me that there should be nothing they hear about me from someone else, and today I realise the worth of that trust. This incident was one of the few examples of the trust my parents always had in me, and touch-wood always will.

Well you know how it is in India..a boy and a girl are seen out together and immediately tongues start wagging….now i had a lot of male friends in college…there was no other choice as there were 45 boys and 5 girls in each specialisation..anyway nevertheless fact is i had loads of male friends…and of course when i bunked classes i used to go out with them…

Now one day a neighbour saw me with a male friend in a crowded mall area…and promptly in the evening when he saw my dad he went and told him..”today i saw your daugher in this area…SHE WAS WITH A BOY” (with a lot of emphasis on the boy part). So my dad looked at him and shook his hands and said and this is quote unquote my dad “Thank you so much for telling me this. I was always worried my daughter has become invisible and people cannot see her. Thanks for telling me she can be seen. Next time when you see her go and say Hi. That way you will clear one more myth I have that my daughter can even talk when she is outside?”….

LOL…you should have seen the look on the neighbour’s face…never again did he try and tell my dad anything about me again 🙂

That day this incident seemed funny to me but today when I look back I realise what amount of trust and faith and liberty was given to me, something now nearly a decade after college I still find lacking in parents of many of my friends.

Parenting….# 2

My parents

My parents

In my ongoing series of things I learnt from my parents, this is another story….

When you want to be equal, don’t expect privileges…this was something i learnt from my dad.

Once when I was in my plus 2 days, I came home huffing and puffing angry with some nerd who was in the bus who did not get up seeing me though he was sitting in the ladies’ seat

So Baba saw me and asked what happened and of course I vented out my anger as to how that man lacked chivalry, etc etc. It was then Baba said something I will never forget….He asked me “Were you in any problem that you could not stand?” I of course said no. So he said “What would you have done if a woman was sitting there” and I said I would stand like I did. Thats when he asked me “Do you consider yourself any less than the boys you know or men in general”. Now me the ever feminist of course refuted and said how dare you think that way. So he said “then why did you today consider yourself any lesser, that a man had to get up for you to sit down? When you want to be equal you need to FIRST TREAT YOURSELF AS AN EQUAL. You cannot want special privileges and equality at the same time”. Though I did understand what he meant I still egged him on and said “But you always behave so chivalrously. You always open the door, pour the wine, pull out the chair. Why do you do it?” That is when he said “Being chivalrous is my duty and I will remain chivalrous all my life, cause I was taught to be so. But expecting chivalry is your privilege. My duty is not your birthright

SINCE THAT DAY I HAVE NEVER EVER SAT ON A LADIES SEAT IN A BUS, AND NEVER EVER HAVE I IN MY CORPORATE LIFE OR OTHERWISE EVER TOLD ANYONE TO DO ANYTHING SPECIAL FOR ME CAUSE I A WOMAN. That day I learnt that to be equal I first need to treat myself equally.

Also see my other posts on parenting :
https://worldasisee.wordpress.com/2011/02/07/parenting-1/

Parenting….# 1

My parents

Since I have moved to Bangalore, the one thing which amazes me here is the amount of control parents have on kids and this cuts across all ages and its amazing. I have been touch-wood very lucky to have extremely understanding and liberal parents, who have not only given me the freedom to choose my life and make my own mistakes, but have stood by me through thick and thin. Its not like I have not reprimanded when I make mistakes (which of course me being perfect is rare :P) but then I have been allowed to lead my own life, find my own destiny and become my own person cause of them.

Before I start I would like to make one thing clear – my parents were not God. They never wanted me to believe they were. They always believed they were humans and I should treat them that way. They made their share of mistakes and their share of right things too, but in every way the one thing they never failed to do was to tell me that they were there always and for them my happiness was above all.

Anyway, so today I will start this series which will talk of the various things they taught me or told me or did for me, which made the person I am…some are funny incidents, some are their teachings, some are things they did for me which taught me something…..and someday when am married and have kids of my own, I hope I can teach them these very things too. This is in my own way, my tribute to my parents….

When i turned 18 baba and ma wished me and this is exactly what they told me…They said “today you are 18 and officially an adult. From today onwards you are free to take your own decisions and lead your life your own way. We feel as parents we have brought you up with the right value system and we feel you can take your own decisions correctly. As parents we will always reserve the right to tell you how we feel about your actions and comment on them and also try and guide you but the END DECISION HAS TO BE YOURS. But remember one thing that with every decision comes responsibility. You cannot take decisions and then come running to us when things go wrong. You have to solve them yourself and bear the responsibility yourself. You cannot blame others for things if they go wrong. If you take a wrong decision remember you have to feel the pain. Similarly if you take a right one you will feel the joy. Both are yours. As parents we assure you we will always be with you, in the good and the bad. So lead your life your way and we both believe that you will never ever misuse the freedom we give you or else we will know that we are unsuccessful in bringing you up properly”

Till date I have never forgotten this education and something I plan to impart to my kids, when I have them. Today when I see parents who control every breath of their kid, I realise the value of the freedom and responsibility my parents gave me and the value of what they told me when I turned 18……

Also see my other posts on parenting :
https://worldasisee.wordpress.com/2011/02/08/parenting-2/

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