Confused Parenting!

So I am confused. Which is nothing new really. But sometimes its just better to ask people instead of letting your mind conflict within itself. Then the nerves of the brain seem to go ‘dum dum dum’ like R beating her hands on the table as if she is playing tabla in the most nonrhythmic manner every possible!

Anyways I digress.

So I am confused.

R has been asked to get pictures of six animals with TWO lines each (teacher wrote in red and bold) information on the so called animals, for a class project on Wednesday.

Despite the non stop pouring rains, RD ventured out to get colour print outs of the animals I had downloaded from the net, yesterday. R and I sat down to write about the animals. I was supposed to write in rough and send her and she is supposed to paste the picture on tinted paper and write about it. So she chose giraffe, cheetah, elephant, monkey, deer and rabbit.

I asked her what she wanted to write, and except for confirming stuff with RD twice, she managed to come up with her own lines. Which I thought was great. You know how the mind of a 6 yo works.

Rabbit – A Rabbit can hop. A rabbit likes to eat carrots

Monkey – A monkey can jump from one tree to another. A monkey does things like humans.

You get the gist. Simple stuff which she knows already about the animals. And I must admit, I was pretty surprised and pleased that she made an effort to think on her own, despite my MIL prompting her stuff, she came up with lines on her own.

I wrote the information on all six of them in a rough piece of paper one after the other. I explained to R how she should paste the pictures and then write the information I had put below the picture. I also made her read it once so that she actually understood what I had written.

All this was fine.

Until.

Yesterday night, I got messages from her class Whatsapp group. Yes, there is a group and yes I am a silent member of the same. and no, the only reason I am continuing to be a part of the group is that if any day, the brat is unwell, I can get the homework etc from there. And yes, everyday there are some 40 messages from irrelevant forwards, to devotional messages on 109 names of Lord Shiva, to teacher bashing to jokes that border to being non veg. And of course, the homework bit. So I continue to be a part of the group.

Anyways, some parent in the group came up with pictures of what she planned to give her daughter.

She put up pictures of six A4 size papers printed beautifully, with the picture of the animal and four lines on it. Repeat, four lines. And it would because super easy for the child to just copy it on the tinted paper.

And these four lines included stuff like Tiger attacks its prey by ‘ambush’ or a group of cats are collectively known as Clowder.

Then I got a bit shaky. I showed it to RD. He shrugged his shoulders and told me everyone has their way of doing it.

But me being me, the confused soul, now is wondering

1. Should I do the same way for R? Taking pictures and print outs, so that it makes work easy for her?
2. Did I make a mistake by letting R decide what she wants to write. Should I have made her write stuff which will make her learn words like ambush and clowder?
3. Am I just being too easy with her? Should I be working harder on these projects?

Darn! This parenting bit I tell you.,…Its like a non-stop series of questions, muddling my mind!

RD, on the other hand, is the least bothered. He feels if I want to write 4 lines, I should, or just let her be if the teacher has mentioned only two lines…Gah!

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Friday Frowns

Since I am a pessimist at heart, and always cribbing, I am going to write about everyday things that make me frown on a Friday! Read at your own risk! 

1. Why is it overcast when the clouds are not pouring? There is no logic na. Either you rain or you just let the sun come up no? At least my clothes will dry! (Still worried about the water cuts in Bombay , thats why asking for rains..those of you who have fallen off the chair in worry that RM started liking rains *gasp* can get up and dust your dress)

2. Why do they have 2 week long exams in the brat’s school? This week some internals going on. Will finish only on Monday..and then in August again internals…like Ma said ‘now she is in class 1, better get used to regular homework and studies!’ Gah!

3. I am yearning to eat some garlic. Yes…I sound so idiotic..but I am. I want to eat food cooked in garlic. MIL is here and she is very allergic to the smell of garlic so no garlic in the house till she is around. But yesterday, I had this sudden urge to eat Schzewan egg fried rice, hakka noodles and gobi manchurian. WHICH I DIDNT! Instead I ate channa dal and roti *eye roll*

4. RD and I are thinking of going somewhere during the August 15th long weekend. But we havent communicated with each other in the past 3 days. He leaves at 5 and comes at 11. I dont even know when he comes back. In the mornings, the only thing I give him is a cup of coffee. Tomorrow hopefully we will sit and plan!

5. Its really none of my business, but I am so bugged at some parents in our building who send their kids to play at 8 in the night. I am strict that R comes up at 8 or max 8.15 because she needs to get up early. Every evening is a fight between me and her, she pleading to stay for 10 minutes,  and me being the horrid tiger mom tell her to come up or stay down the whole night. I hate it!

6. I started reading a book ‘After Taste’ and its first 10 pages left a very bad taste in my mouth so I stopped reading it.

7. I am reading a lot of children’s books now a days for IMC book week between August 4th to August 14th. But I realise I get very upset when the books end fast. I finish reading them in about a hour or two and then I start wondering why do they end so fast :(

There, finished my crib list….good way to end a week eh?

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School Tales

I think the easiest part of parenting is the delivery. After that every step is a challenge. Did I do right? Did I react properly? Should I have done anything else? Darn! Why my child? etc etc…such questions keep plaguing my mind all the time!

================

Brat is having dictation. MIL made her say all the spellings, since I was late to reach home. I didnt do anything after that, thinking she will write okay.

Next evening, I ask her how the dictation went.

R: I got all right

RM: Oh good

R: Except 1

RM: Oh okay

R: Aap gussa nahi ho na?

RM: No its okay na..wrong toh wrong, now you will remember the spelling all your life right?

R: hmmm

After 2 minutes

R: Amma, I got stones ka spelling wrong

RM: Its okay da

R: I wrote it as ‘stonse’, instead of ‘stones’..

RM: Okay..but when you say stones, ‘s’ sound comes last na

R: yaa..but I like ‘e’ after ‘s’

RM: !!!!

============

I have had the brat on homeopathy meds since she was about 1 to combat her asthma, and its working pretty well. However, she had a bad cold last week and we got meds from the doctor. She needs to take 3 pills, three times a day. Since she is in school all day, I give her the bottle to school and ask her to eat after her lunch.

Yesterday she came and said ‘Amma, I shared three pills with my friend S as well’

I almost dropped the books in my hand and said ‘Oh My God’

R: Kya hua..sharing kiya na!

RM: No no..you cant share meds..what if she gets any reaction

At this R got very upset. She did mean well, but then…

I told her how risky it was and if something happens to S, we would end up in jail (okay that was exaggeration, but still needed to put my point across!) yaada yaada

She was very upset.

In the night, suddenly she woke up and asked ‘Amma, S will be okay na?’

Darn,I did feel guilty but realised its better to keep her scared than let her share meds eh?

==========

R tells me about her friend K who doesnt like it if R talks to other girls.

R: Amma, I told her so many times, she is my friend and others are my friends, but she says I can only be her friend. ab kya karu?

RM: Do you like talking to the other girls

R: Thats why I talk na (yaa right!)

RM: Then tell K, I will talk to them and you both

R: But K will stop talking to me

RM: Well her loss na..she will stop talking to you for 2 days, after that she will come to you dont worry.

Yesterday, the brat tells me

R:Amma, you are right. K stopped talking to me, but then started talking after two periods. I did like you told me to. you are nice Amma!

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Those Weekend Mornings

Dear R

When you are 13 and get really bugged at me for waking you up at 10 in the morning, saying ‘Wake up, its already 10 and when do you plan to get up and have a hair bath’ please do remember these mornings of ours.

For the past 3 or 4 months, we have been having really nice and memorable weekend mornings. Our weekday mornings are crazy, I am screaming at you to hurry up and you are telling me to cool it and that I wont miss the bus, or whatever.

But for the past few Saturdays and Sundays, we actually have had amazing mornings today. You and me. I wake up at about 7ish to find you awake and staring at my face. You touch your earlier-chubby-but-now-getting-longer fingers to my eyelids to check if I am awake. If I am, then you look at me with your amazing brown eyes and ask me ‘Amma, aap sleeping ho kya?’

Hmmmm I reply trying to let you know that I hate opening my mouth without brushing.

But you care two hoots. You start asking me questions. Dozens of them. I try to answer them without opening my mouth, but you ensure that you ask me at least one complicated question which means I HAVE to open my mouth and answer you. We talk about a lot of things.

Your school, your friends, the bus, the daycare, the weather, the sun, the directions, the heat, the cold, food, chocolates, my office, my friends, my bus experiences, your van experiences, Appa, grandparents, mamas, mamis, cousins, chittis, chitappas, perimas, peripas, dance, songs, studies, exams, tensions and what not.

Every weekend morning brings a topic we both have a lot to tell each other. You snuggle in the curve of my shoulder and I put my arms around you. We put the bedsheet over us, sharing the warmth and talking about everything and anything. We try to solve each other’s problems and you tell me so many things about yourself. I must admit, I have learnt a lot about you in the past few months. You are very headstrong, but you fear losing your friends.

You love going to school, but seem to miss all the activities which you had in your Sr. Kg. You love learning new things, but find it tough to keep writing all the time. You are worried about your homework but love the fact that we finish it at one go in the evenings. You think you are going to become a chef, but also like the idea of being a doctor.
You told me that you want to become a doctor in space. When I asked you to elaborate, you said, ‘Main space mein jaungi aur Mars mein jaake dekhungi’ I ask you if you want to be come an astronaut? You say no ‘I will be astronauts ka doctor!’
Sometimes you blow me away with your vivid imagination and your positive outlook in life. I love to hear you talk about your life in general. I used to feel that as a working mom, I am missing out on a major chunk of your life, but these mornings make me feel that there is nothing am missing out.

Sometimes, we just lie down enjoying each other’s warmth and close our eyes being in our own world, until you think of the next topic to talk about. We talk, we argue, we fight, we make up and we have fun.

I love the 30 to 45 minutes we spend together. Every weekend. Its such fun. And then we make plans on how we are going to wake up Appa. Whether you will tickle him or will you jump on him and scare him. Will you scream in his ears or just tap him and call him lovingly.

I try to get up and you keep pulling me down saying ‘Amma, 5 minutes Amma, we will brush our teeth in 5 minutes’

thank you..thank you..and more thank you, R, for these precious moments together.

This is what memories are made of, I think.

love
Amma

PS – No, I still dont like talking without brushing my teeth :)

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If You Wont, Who Will?

 The case of the 6 year old raped in a prestigious school in Bangalore, left me shaken. Very badly. I have a 6 year old at home, and I cant imagine anyone doing anything to her. It just gives me goosebumps, the very thought.
I can imagine what the parents of the child will be undergoing.
Surprisingly, there are news reports that the school doesn’t claim any responsibility for safety. How on earth can a school say that? I send my child to school for 6 to 7 hours. School is called our second home. That’s what we learnt when we were kids. I remember writing essays on school, when I was a kid, saying the school is our second home and teachers are like our parents.
I have always been taught to bow down to my teachers, that they are the final authority in everything they teach us.
And then this?
I am so shattered as I read it, that I feel numb. How can a school say its not responsible for the safety of the child. I can understand the school saying its not responsible for the property/things which the child brings to school – you know – pencil, eraser, scale, and in some higher classes, perhaps mobile phones or something. (Which actually shouldn’t even be allowed in school, but that’s a different post in itself)
But, not responsible for safety?? What sort of a logic is that?
Again, I can understand if the school says that once the child leaves the school premises or the school bus, they are not responsible for the safety. You know, once you get down the school bus, its your parents who are responsible for your safety. But inside the school isn’t it the school’s responsibility. If they are not responsible, who is?
Whom will you trust your 5 years and 6 year olds? Who will take care of them? Who will be careful about them, when they go for picnics or field trips or just stay inside the school and attend gym period?
I don’t know if there is any logic in the school not claiming responsibility at all?
I honestly tried thinking about this safety thing from a school administrator’s point of view. But I still cant think of a single argument on why schools can say they are NOT responsible for a child’s safety!
For parents, on what basis do you send your child to school? Whom do you believe? How do you know that your child is safe?
For a mother who is not in touch with her child for nearly 10-12 hours a day, I am shuddering this moment, wondering how safe is my child? Whom shall I trust? Its really sad that at this moment, I trust no one. The nice bus conductor who puts her on the bus whenever she falters, or the driver of the bus who waits for her to climb before starting the bus. The Sanskrit sir of hers who gave a wonderful speech on the birth of language, or her gym sir who taught her how to do ‘gulantis’ in an easy way? Can I trust her class teacher to keep an eye on her and figure out where she is all the time, or can I trust the computer teacher to ensure that every child is back to the class after coming from the computer class? Can I believe the aunty who makes her sit in the bus or can I believe the aunty who sits near the toilets to ensure that the kids don’t fumble and fall?
I don’t know whom to trust and who not to!
If schools don’t accept responsibility for the safety of the child, who will? Can we really send our children to school at all?
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The Train Ride Yesterday

Yesterday, when I boarded the train, I saw a mother and child sitting in the seat, with the mother giving a chocolate to the child. The child must be about 4 years old, he had an instrument attached from his the back of his t shirt to the lower part of his head.

I realised the child was differently abled, by the way the mother was talking to the child. The child was insistent on removing the cover the of the chocolate by himself. She gave in but he couldnt remove it completely and started using his teeth. She then took it from him and he hit her on the face. She didnt react but told him very very politely that he didnt do the right thing. He caught his ears immediately as if to say sorry and handed over the chocolate to her and asked her in sign language to remove it. She told him again ‘Say Mama, remove’ He didnt, he pointed in sign language. Again she told him. This went on for about 6 times, before he said ‘Mama, open’

And the lady’s face broke into a smile, which I wish I could have captured and bottled up to look whenever I am upset.

Eventually the boy got bored of sitting and came near me. He looked at me.

I said ‘hello’

He smiled shyly.

I asked him did you like your chocolate

He nodded.

I said ‘no tell me yes or no’

He nodded and smiled.

I said ‘tell me, did you like it, yes or no’

He mumbled something.

I said ‘Can I have a tiny bite of your chocolate?’

He pointed to his tummy and said in sign language that it was already in his tummy.

I said ‘give me from your tummy.’

He pretended to ignore me.

The mother said ‘see what aunty is saying V, will you give to aunty from your tummy’

The boy started laughing loudly. A gay loud laughter which comes from the tummy which makes you realise what happiness is all about. The kind of laughter which only a child is capable of bringing out, from the depths of his stomach.

And then he started picking his nose. I told him, please dont do that, its not a good habit.

He smiled and continued.

A lady next to me asked (very insensitively infact) whats that device on his head.

I looked at her aghast and just mumbled ‘he is not my child’

The mother looked into her eyes very matter of factly and said ‘Thats an hearing aid. He has speech issues and I am just getting him back from his speech therapy classes’

The woman I think realised she was being a bit insensitive.

I asked the boy ‘Where are your classes?’

He pointed to his mother, and instructed her to tell me where his classes were.

She named a suburb which was very very far away from where we were going. Do you go there everyday I asked. No, twice a week, but it seems pretty effective, as long as we continue to talk to him in one language and insist he replies back however he can.

I said ‘thats great’

Meantime the boy showed me his umbrella. A black one with white polka dots. It was pouring outside the train. He pointed out and then indicated that he uses the umbrella in the rain. And asked me where was mine (all in sign language)

I said mine was in the bag. He asked to see it. I looked at his mother. She nodded. I said ‘ask me what you want’

He smiled and pointed his umbrella.

I said ‘I dont understand, tell me what you want to see’

This again happened 5 times before he pointed to his umbrella and mumbled ‘ella’

I took out mine. He laughed again. And I told him his was much prettier than mine.

HE immediately said yes. The look on his mother’s face was priceless. She smiled at me.

When their usual station came, he pointed to his mother that he wanted to get down. I was astonished that a kid so young remembered where they had to get down. But they were coming a bit further, since his mother had some work.

HE got angry and started picking his nose again. I said dont do it beta. His mother tried to remove his hand and he hit her again. My first reaction was no, dont hit your mother. He looked at me angrily, and then his mother. His face changed. He again held his ears as if to say sorry.

Then I got up and said bye to him. He looked at me, smiled and screamed ‘Bubyeeeeee’ and I think it was the happiest moment of the day for me. He then pointed to my umbrella and said ‘up’ as if to tell me to use the umbrella when it was raining. I think that was the point I choked up a bit.

I wanted to write this incident down because the next time I crib about life, I know there are so many parents who undergo so much for their children. His mother was the epitome of patience I think!

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22 Answers!!

And Someone give me another award for answering these :):)

Shweta and Rubberpal both have been kind enough to bestow the Leibster Award to me :)

liebster-award (1)

I have already followed the rules to this award earlier, which includes thanks to blogger who awarded it to me. So THANK YOU Shweta and Rubberpal. Thank you very very much :)

Answer the 11 questions they pose to you.

So first, Shweta’s 11.

1. Are you addicted to something? If yes, What? (other than alcohol, cigars and drugs)

I am addicted to reading, eating as much as possible, sleeping at every possible moment I am awake, .
2. What does money mean to you? Why? (No one liners please)

Boss, what question is that. No Money means a lot of problems na. If I were planning to go on Sanyas to Himalayas (even then I would need money to buy warm clothes!) I would say money is the root cause to all evil, yaada yaada, but lets face it boss, money is important. As long as I dont get addicted to it, I am fine eh?
3. What is your passion? What do you like to do the most apart from eating and sleeping?

Errr…passionate about reading food blogs, but never cooking..is that passion enough?
4. What quality of your best friend/friends do you admire?

Their ability to listen to my never ending chatter…btw, do I even have a best friend? *wonders*

5. Have you ever felt guilty for doing something in life, that keeps troubling you even now?

Aiyo, the major occupational hazard of being a mother is that you feel guilty about one thing or the other. But I have learnt to overcome that kind of guilt now. Make mistake, cry about it, rant about it on blog, feel better and guilty gayab.
6. What is that one good thing that you can proudly say to anyone about yourself, I mean a lesson from your life that people can learn?

Errr…errrr…errrr…
7. Have you ever been in a relationship with someone? If yes What did you learn/admire / hate about being in a relationship?

Nahi unless you count the fact that I am married to the same guy for 8 years…thats something nice no?
8. Whom do you admire the most in your family? (Doesn’t need to be your parents or siblings, can be cousins or anyone in the family)

Baap rey, all my relatives read my blog, you want me to be clobbered in the next family meet or what!
9.What kind of person are you? (Funny/humorous/serious/shy…….)

Lazy
10. If you were given a chance to go out on a dinner with, Who would that lucky one be?

hahaha, whoever feeds me street chaat food…you coming along?
11. Which is your favorite post from your blog? If I would insist that you pick one out of the lot, Which one would that be?

Aiyo, I dont have the enthusiasm to go through the 1000+ stupid posts that I have written, so I would say PAASSSS!!
Gee what fun I had writing these answers..

 

now to RubberPal
1. The one best moment that made you feel that writing down can make you happy and relaxed

Errrr…errrr….errrr…

2. Which blog or who was your inspiration in starting this site in WordPress

Aparna of womensweb
3. What is your relationship with a Personal Diary

Best kept in a drawer under lock and key

4. Have you ever thought about writing a book

Oh number of times..but its always a thought and never went beyond the brain nerves

5. One best lesson your friends have taught you until now

Stop being judgemental in life

6. What makes you depressed and what makes you smile?

Errr…everything makes me depressed because I am a pessimist at heart…and everything makes me smile because behind every dark cloud there is a silver lining no?

7. Do you have a friend whom you can rely on anything and everything? Do you agree on “Opposite sex makes good friends?”

No to the first one, and to the second one, I guess a yes, because I have loads of guys I am friends with including my spouse
8. Your first crush :-)

Kalakhatta slush at 7-11 in King’s circle which my cousin Preethi made me taste when I was 10…
9. How do you define LIFE

If I knew the definition, I would be a famous baba on the TV no?

10. The best thing that you learnt from your closest friend

Errr…well..who exactly is my closest friend needs to be answered first!

11. One thing you yearn to do in life

Travel. Honest to God, I am trying, but never succeeding. But I will. Because I have miles to go before I sleep and miles to go before I sleep. *gives cheesy smile*

 

Thanks folks I had fun answering these :)

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