Click here for shortcuts to regional language blogs and city-specific events.
I am writing this with heavy heart, as its time for his lunch break and it's the first time that my son went to school without his lunch box. I tried to tempt his taste buds calling out names of all his favourites snacks but he was strong enough to stick to his decision. The reason he gave for this indecent behaviour was that he wanted me to know how one feels when denied! My guilt started to built up but I could not understand how come a ten year old child; who has a great fetish for food, be so stubborn to the extent that he was prepared to stay empty! As he saw my watery eyes; he declared that he wasn't going to fast anyways, he'll eat with his friends but not carry anything from home today. Honestly his "no" made me feel so bad that I was forced to rekindle my screening of the don't s of positive parenting.
After great deal of introspection and self examination I found myself struggling with my own norms and accepted the fact that I cannot be always right. I am learning to nurture my boys with all the possible best, yet I've been making some greatest mistakes in my journey. It's obviously a conscious effort to come to terms with my faults having scope for improvement, but I want to share a few of these blunders that play key role in ruining our most precious relationship.
1) An overdose of ''NO'': It's being rated as the most efficient vitamin on the social sites these days. Everything that our body needs is framed into its upper and lower limits, crossing it on either sides proves to be detrimental. If overindulgence is inappropriate, so is excessive denial. If we shun their innocent conversations with a 'no' every now and then, we shall be dragging our children away from us rather than opting to bond with them. I am not discussing 'needs and wants' here as the criteria for things differ from person to person and we are all free to make our individual choices. I aim at balancing of the equation, if its wrongly equated, it's a mistake chemically that alters the sensitivity of the situation. Make sure about ten times before you refuse anything the next time cause they might do the same with you.
2) Disciplining the bundles of energy: Why are children expected to behave in a particularly fixed pattern? Why can't they be themselves? Do anyone of us recall our parents teaching us behavioural lessons, about a few decades back? As in how to talk, walk, eat, drink etc... At least I don't. Each individual has his own sense of adapting to situations and they will certainly fix matters as per their approach. Why be there to judge their actions trying hard to polish their skills when they will be capable, one day; on their own. Why can't we let their childhood unfold beautifully without the load of etiquette's and mannerisms. Each one of them will surely learn things when time comes, so please let them be at ease when they are with you rather than making stringent rules to follow.
3) Creating boundaries and setting up goals: All parents are very protective of their children, they are ready to accept any challenge for their child's good. Over protected children are generally lacking in self confidence and expression of their feelings because they are not allowed to feel the fear of losing, gain the pain of hard work and perceive the complexities of life. let them wander in their world beyond the borders of your reach without shielding and directing them towards a particular path, be there as a companion, not as a intruder; they may aim higher than your expectations or topple down from the height as a struggler, you be there as their anchor, their trusted strength.
4) Individual respect and dignity: When they emote the rhymes as a child; we love their wobbly act , the same stuff goes unheard or is made fun off as they start growing. With their body, their mind too is developed now to differentiate between interest and mockery. As we love to be admired and respected, so do they and if their efforts are not applauded by their own parents, they feel rejected and doomed. If we respect their thoughts and deeds as an individual's rather than disregarding as a child's we shall be able to give them liberty from self approval and acceptance that we all crave for, as humans.
5) Frequent stories of struggle: Even animals nurture their young ones up to a certain age, but they never remind their babies of it every second day. Its every parent's moral duty to bring up the child they are responsible for, in whatever way feasible. This does not mean you make such false promises to your children that you cannot keep and hide out in name of the hardships that you encounter each day. Life is not easy for anybody, each one is fighting one's own battle but counting your wounds frequently to gain children's sympathy is not wise enough, brave is he who covers up and smiles gallantly spreading joy.
Children are God's most precious gifts and shower the most purest form of his love; only if we grownups can fill our hands with his majestic blessings and let them be unique as they are born; rather than taming them to imitate others, like monkeys!