It’s the weekend! Yay! My day to laze around and wanting to do nothing which is technically not possible as I am a single mother. After gobbling down my favourite comfort food – dal-chawal, I was lying down. Tired but not sleepy so I decided to watch the long-time overdue-to-watch movie – Shakuntala Devi. I enjoyed the movie very much. Towards the end of the movie, in one of her interviews, Shakuntala Devi says that her favourite number is zero because life is like a zero. It keeps teaching you lessons until you finally learn it. Profound, isn’t it?
I could relate this to my experiences in life. Indirectly, she referred that a pattern that keeps repeating itself until we choose to break it. Everyone has some patterns that they follow since their ancestors, some choose to break it some choose to continue to follow it. Then they wonder why they are stuck in the same place as their parents or ancestors. In my family, one such pattern has been of toxic parenting. A pattern that my mother learned unanimously from her mother and relatives. As a child, I was lucky enough to recognize this and I had vowed to myself I would never behave the way my mother did with me. After making these everyday mental notes, they are so clearly etched in my memory that I am pretty sure, I don’t need to read a book because I have got a whole folder in my brain named “Parenting 101”. However, I did not have any resources to look up for inspiration or guidance.
The day I became a mother, I started reading blogs, articles on parenting my kid at different ages, of his life and implemented most of the things. Yes, most. Remember, patterns ingrained in your blood from your ancestors? Its difficult to break. I somehow, managed to implement most of them and even got a certificate for it. One such odd day my son told me, “You are the coolest mom!” That, that itself was my medal of honour that I did something right that my son had to say this. This reminded me of an incident, when once my son said to his friend – My mom is really cool! And his friend shot a bewildered look like he must be thinking – “Are you nuts?”, “Bro, is that your Mom you talking about?” ( So generally I have a poker face when I step out of my house. I keep to myself, don’t have time to gossip so don’t like gossip and can’t stand fake hellos. Apart from this, I am tired due to working in night shifts so don’t have the strength to manage a smile) Most of my son’s friends are surprised when they hear the fun activities I do with my son.
Well, the point is – Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder. So, it doesn’t matter what the rest of the world thinks about you as a mother, daughter, wife or sister. You will always be perfect with your flaws in the eyes of the person who truly loves you. Just keep doing your best in every role and that you will get the much needed acknowledgement or award at the most unusual times. No mother or father is perfect including my parents. A constant reminder i have. We all make mistakes and that’s what makes us human. I have been reprimanded by my parents because I, along with my son stayed up and watched Back to the Future movie. My weekend schedule is filled with pending tasks like compensating for the sleep over the week, cleaning and paying up bills, getting repairs done around the house. So Saturday night was the only time I could spend with my son cuddled next to me, with dim lights on and watch a movie which is a favourite pastime in these covid days. After the movie was over, my son excitedly told me “Wow mom! This felt like I was watching movie in a theater!” There, right there! I got my award for making it a memorable night. That’s where I want to be. In his sweet memories. That’s where I want to live, when I am long gone.
So go on and break that zero (read pattern) and create a pathway towards beautiful memories that makes your kid and you happy. Don’t be afraid to debunk old myths of parenting. Grab that ice-cream from the fridge and have a heart to heart chat with your kid/s. Tell them your goofy stories of childhood. Let them see that you too are a human being and you too can be goofy and funny like them. It’s these simple moments, that make the sweetest memories. Enjoy this roller-coaster ride called parenting. Till then Au-revoir!