Promises

I remember how my heart burst when I saw you for the first time

How overwhelmed I felt when I held you for the first time

How I made so many promises looking at your innocent face

How I promised to be this supremely cool parent.

How I promised to love you unconditionally.

How I pictured all the fun things we would do together.

How i wouldn’t be one of those crazy worriers.

How I would be this ocean of patience,

How I would never yell

These were a few. There were a million more.

I think I’ve broken all except one.

Parenting has taught me one  HUGE thing:

That raising another human being doesn’t follow any pre-written rule-

And if you think it does, you’re in for a big shock.

My thoughts on parenting before kids and the reality are so different.

There will be so many people doling out advice. Most well meaning. But you need to do what you need to do.

You know what’s best for your child. Else you will figure it out. Your own way and sometimes the hard way.

It’s been almost 9 years since the mom version of me was born

Since then,

I’ve eaten my words,

I’m not the “Cool” mom. I’M the mean one.

The rule breaker me created and enforced rules.

I found my inner disciplinarian.

I embraced my inner chef- the one who made jam sandwiches when sleep deprived.

I realised that love and patience were related but not by much.

I’ve yelled more than I care for. My love and my temper had nothing to do with each other.

I had to go back to the drawing board to raise my daughter because my kids were so different.

and I found myself changing so much.

But there’s just one promise holds good from both those days- the first time I held my babies .

The promise of unconditional love.

And that will always be.

The rest, let’s just play it by the ear.

babies

 

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Writing as a part of Team Blue Lagoon on the prompt- Promises.

 

 

 

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Of shoe addicts

She walked into the big bright store,

All wide eyed and all of four.

She looked around and then

dragged me

to the brightest section she could see.

An array of colors,

And silver and gold

Shiny and strappy

heels and flats.

” I want”  she said to the salesman

Who grinned at me and then told her

“You have baby feet. You need tiny shoes”

She looked at her feet and then picked out one blingy pair of heels.

“I want”, she said. Looking at me with big eyes.

And then she turned to the shoes

and said- “I want them all. So pleetty!”

Kids section first floor , ma’am.

The salesman said.

I took her there and she asked

” Can I have them all?”

And picked out a blingy pair of shoes, a size too big

“I want shoes, mamma. I don’t want the doll.”

They didn’t have it in her size. We bought in any way.

I couldn’t believe she changed her mind

and wanted shoes as a gift for her birthday

She wore a year later

when she turned five.

It finally fit.  Those golden blingy shoes.

tiny shoes

For every occasion since, we’ve bought the shoes first and then a dress to go with that. As we walked out of the store that day, she grinned at me – “I cant wait to glow (grow) big and wear all those shoes. ” Well, that’s been added to the every growing list of growing up goals- become a story teller, wear lots of shoes,  buy a Harley at 18 go to Disneyland, and go  “under the sea” to see Australia’s great barrier reef… etc.

My little girl has her priorities right.

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Writing as a part of team Blue Lagoon on the prompt  Tiny Shoes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

in flagarante delicto

My relationship with my mom alternated between friendship and her being my mom.  I was extremely independent, had a mind of my own and could be rather mouthy. My mom was incredibly understanding- my best friend and my greatest enemy all rolled into one. She was a friend but didn’t delude herself that it was her only role. She was my mom first and had no issues calling me out on any bullshit . She also didn’t particularly care to explain herself to her kids. “Because I said so”  “I’m your mom and that’s good enough”  ” That’s just too bad. ” “Life is so unfair.” So in all those huge altercations with Amma, I would swear  ” I’m never going to be like you”. “You’re so uncool. ”  I had this huge list of parenting things that I would never do.  Looking back , I was a walking, talking, rebellious , pain in the ass.

One of the things that annoyed Amma big time was my brother and I fighting over chocolates. She considered it fighting over food and it was something that always got her goat. She didn’t understand why we couldn’t just share. While we didn’t seem to have any problems sharing other things , chocolates were a huge no no. We would argue and fight over who got the bigger piece. ” Aren’t you both ashamed to fight over food?” she’d go in Malayalam- between her tone and the Malayalam language the disgust over us fighting over chocolates was conveyed loud and clear. One time she got so mad, she took the whole bag of chocolates and gave it to the maid for her kids. And given that those were chocolates an aunt had brought from abroad, I was so mad!! She did hit upon a solution. One person broke the chocolate and the other person got to choose first. So we were careful to break it equally. Looking back, I don’t understand why she just didn’t get us individual chocolates. She always got us one and said, “Share. ”

Cut to 2014.  In my home, we speak mostly English. While the kids understand hindi and malayalam, they both speak in English.  Mom was visiting and we went to meet my aunt. My aunt gives my kids this big bar of chocolate and they decide to have it at once. Of course, in two minutes, the fighting began. I was quiet for the first five minutes. Figured they could sort it out between them. But hey, do they stop? No. it’s getting very intense. And in someone else’s house. I lost it. I rounded on them : ” Stop fighting right now!” And then I just continued…” Aren’t you ashamed to fight over food? Give that to me. Here, D .. you break and S gets to choose. And if I hear you fighting again, I’m giving that chocolate to jaya didi for her kids. ”  There !!  That should sort it. My kids are looking at me wide eyed. My aunt and my mom seem to have identical grins on their faces.

And that’s when I realised what I said. And I said it in Malayalam. In the same tone. The one I HATED growing up.

And here I was. Caught red handed. In Flagarante Delicto. In front of the two women who were very explicitly told that I would be nothing like them. All strict and not understanding and railing away at my kids. I had done just that. heck, I’d even used the exact words and tone!

Well played Karma . Well played.

It’s a different thing that, today, I feel that if I could be half the parent she is, then my kids will be fine.

But really, Karma, did you have to make me eat my words IN FRONT OF THEM?!!

Image source:

sometimes

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Writing as a part of team Blue Lagoon.

Dr Seuss and then some more…

I’ve been reading so much of Dr. Seuss off late. And there’s just so much of wisdom in children’s literature… and yea in my opinion there’s much more wisdom in Calvin and Hobbes than there is in New Age spiritualism. C&H is my go to when I’m low.

That aside, here’s something that’s been floating on Facebook..5-lessons-in-life-from-dr-seuss-26600

Now sit back and imagine what this world would be like.. if all the people understood and followed this.

I’d like my kids to read and live the essence of Rudyard Kipling’s IF and someday take Ted Hughes advice on the Universal Inner Child. 

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But most of all, I’m going to be reading and rereading Dr. Seuss to them… because if that wisdom sinks in  at a tender age, me thinks they’re set for life…

The Masterchef Effect

So the kids are down with cough and cold and didn’t go to school today.  Of course they were going nuts at home… and conversations were peppered every two seconds with- “I want to do something else, mamma.”

Finally, I put them in their room and asked them to come up with their own games.- get creative, do what you want.. play a pretend game

Five minutes later, Mishti’s Kitchen with its little stove and sink and stands was assembled and the kids came to tell me their game.

They were playing restaurant!!!!

Both were chefs!!

The entree ( or as my son put it: that thing you eat first)- Fench Fies or something with aaloo that mamma likes

The main course: Fied ice, paata from Mishti and Fat rotis ( my son’s version of tandoori) and corn subzi

Dessert: Pumpkin Halwa was initially suggested but one look at mamma’s face they immediately changed it to chockate cake and carrot halwa.

Ten minutes later, big fight erupts. I ran to check what was happening. They were fighting over who was supposed to do the dishes since both were chefs.  I explained that even in the biggest restaurants chefs sometimes wash their own dishes. So they did.

Five minutes later another bout of screaming happened

“So what now?” I ask

Sonu says, “I washed all these dishes and now Mishti’s putting them back into the sink.”

to which Mishti shrugs and says, “Bhaiya not clean popely. I do it”

SIGH!!!!! What happened to the ‘pretend’ part of it?

Mommyhood learning curve…

You think you know so much about life? wait till you have kids!!!

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I came across this picture today … a few lessons my kids have taught me  that I can think of are given below.. what about you?

I tried to teach my kids to communicate only to realise the impact on my soul the word “Amma” had when said for the very first time…

I tried to teach my kids to listen, only to realise that I probably needed that lesson the most.

I tried to teach my kids to ask.. to question.. only to find myself questioning a lot of my beliefs while attempting to answer them

i tried to teach my kids to read… only to be told the most creative stories in return

I tried to teach my kids to bond with family, only to rediscover some of those bonds myself…

I tried to teach my kids to go exploring… only to stand, heart in my mouth while they taught me the absolute meaning of the word FEARLESS

I tried to teach my kids about the importance of laughter only to realise I needed to stop taking life so seriously myself…

I tried to teach my kids the importance of respect only to realise that it needed to be extended to them (in every sense of the word) if they were to give it to you.

I tried to teach my kids about being strong in the face of trouble… only for them to teach me what the meaning of the word STRONG actually is. Watching your six month old attached to tubes in a hospital is traumatic enough for the mother

I tried to teach my kids the importance of being disciplined only to realise that I needed a few of those lessons too

I tried to teach my kids to be brave only to realise that their definition of brave was far superior to mine.

I tried to teach my kids the importance of friends… only to realise that it was time to pick up the phone and call a few of mine…

I tried to teach my kids the importance of an education.. only to realize that the greatest school will always be called LIFE.

And I’m back… yes.. AGAIN!! :D

So the Crabby Mommy left a comment on the blog and which reminded me that I have a blog and I haven’t written in a long while.

I’m been  on a decluttering binge ( not that my husband would agree!). So yesterday I decided to delete a load of nonsense forwards from my inbox when I came across this- Mishti’s first birthday invite that I wrote when I was feeling all super emotional that my baby was turning one!!!!

Today, we celebrate.

A year.

Of incredible joy.

Of Accomplishments.

Of moments we doubted our sanity.

Of Moments of absolute pleasure.

Of Survival -of sleepless nights, insanity, dirty diapers,  teething and then biting 

Of wide eyed wonder when one child talked and another crawled

Of elation -a second time – on hearing the words ‘Amma’ and Pappa’ from a baby

Of one where we learnt the real meaning of the word balance

Of watching changing eye color,

Of ‘heart bursting with emotion’ moments- when a little boy was protective of his sister, when he was a lil insecure, when he was super affectionate and when he turned around and told his mother – Mishti sundar hain

Of  learning what a tantrum thrown by a two year old really was like

Of seeing one child off to school and another stand up…

Of all the heartaches that only a parent would ever experience.

Of immense gratitude for the mischievous souls we were blessed with

Of learnings- we had to go back to the drawing board where parenting was concerned

Of discoveries: the length of our tempers, the breadth of our patience and the depth of our love

 

We celebrate a year of being parents to two absolutely awesome kids. 

 

Our baby girl turns one on Wednesday.

 

Today we celebrate

our family.

Next month my baby girl turns three.  Time goes by… too fast…

Boys and their toys

So we went car shopping a couple of weeks back.  When we entered the showroom, M asked Sonu which car he wants… So he went around the showroom and looked around and told my husband- “I want all these cars. Let’s buy and go” indicating the car color palette display.

I burst out laughing and later asked Sonu why he didn’t choose one of the big cars and he says-Because Papa won’t let me play with it.