Most of my days are spent rushing into all sorts of chores and pushing my kids through all their activities. Right from brushing in the morning...all the way to sleep me. It's a task for a parent to actually sit down and admire the children and their sweet innocence in the midst of all the ferrying and rushing. I am beginning to see that as a big mistake. While we do have to ensure that children eat well, learn their lessons and behave with good manners, we also need to listen to their version of events. It may often seem catastrophic to the adult eyes and yet it may have been an earnest sincere effort at something from the child.
It was a particularly trying day for me. I had been going back and forth couple of times. Some chores I was hoping to get done didn't happen. Plans crashed and burned. And there as I walked in, all the magma of the day's frustrations were ready to blow out. The floor was flooded with Lego blocks, sprinkled with snacks and the children were sprawled in front of the telly. My elder one showed me his test results and all I could see were the lost marks. He did pretty well but for a Mom , its never enough. You know your child can do better. But does he need to be so perfect? Isn't that a burden I force on him? I said a few harsh words and yelled at the mess the house was in. I said stuff like just sit in front of cartoon network and eat junk and be happy. I stormed off and jumped into the bed. After a while I got alarmed that there wasn't any noise.
I ran to the living room which had magically transformed !! The Lego s were tucked away and my elder son was sweeping the floor. My younger one was carrying all the footwear deserted at the door to the shoe rack (mine included).My elder one spoke up “Sorry Momma. Please don't be angry. When you are angry we feel very sad. I feel all alone. Without you there is no fun. I will study harder. I will not make any spelling mistakes. I will make sure we both eat food properly.”
His extremely heart rending apology speech felt like a punch in the stomach. It wasn't his responsibility yet he shouldered it. His duty is to be a child. To make a mess and mistakes. That was his right.
Yet it filled me with a light. He did care for my happiness. He didn't hold it against me that I ranted about losing a single mark. He accepted my high expectations.
I hugged him tight. He was a treasure more important than anything. What your child becomes, is your future but who your child is, will always be your utmost happiness. That is what makes your home a little piece of heaven. A safe zone for everyone to do stupid mistakes and learn from them and grow stronger. The world pushes you into a corner, your home is where you recover.
When children care about happiness other than their own, the world has hope of transformation into a beautiful flower garden. We have to admire what we have and innovate and inspire, rather than the catch up with a maddening zombie crowd.
When I sense a meltdown moment inching towards me, I fish out this ray of light. My children care for my happiness. And I must value their happiness more that any notion of success the world may be blinded in. This is my hope, that I can start with my home to fill the world with a little bit of optimism and love.
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