It was fun watching my baby grow and I spent lot of time talking and singing for my baby which he seemed to enjoy as he was getting lot of attention. Cannot say whether he really enjoyed my singing or not. If he could speak, I would have known. I will be narrating many instances where I have learnt lot of things from my child. Sometimes kids seem to be wiser than us. As this not a diary of events, I have decided to write what comes first to my mind.

On his first birthday we got him a cricket ball and a bat and he loved it. Husband being cricket crazy taught him how to bat and bowl. He took a fancy for the Pakistani cricketer Quadir and he use to imitate the body movements of that player. Diving, declaring out, batting, everything caught his fancy. We had a beautiful strip of land in front of our verandah and that was his pitch.

I introduced books to him when he was 11 months old. Many parents spend lot of money in buying expensive toys but not on books. I have heard many parents complaining their children do not read books. My poser to them is, what role have you played to create the interest? Many feel that children will tear the books. To listen to the rustling sound of paper, kids do tear it, but if we are patient and sit with them and show them colorful books they really get hooked. Some damage will be there, but that is part of the child’s learning process.

The first book I bought for him was a pop-up book of animals and everyday he would sit in my lap to listen to my narration. Then we slowly started buying story books of various shapes. He had his own library. For this I want thank his paediatrician as he only told me to introduce books as early as possible to inculcate the reading habit. Today my son is a voracious reader and it has helped him develop his language skills.

Don’t ever feel that my son was only playing cricket and listening to stories .He had another passion – spending time in the kitchen. He was interested in playing with my pressure cooker, spoons and ladles. Most of the time my husband was away on tours which left both of us to spend more and more time together. He also fancied laying out the table like they do in hotels. He would help me in spreading the table mat, arranging spoons and fork on either side of the plate when we expected guests for dinner. I never knew he was so fascinated by the hotel custom until we had a colleague of my husband dropping in for dinner. My son was really a chatter box and he would entertain everybody. He was in U.K.G at that time. I had made variety rice like lemon, coconut and curd. Dinner had just finished and I had gone to clear the plates and the men started chatting. Dessert was served and I saw my son coming out with an old diary cover and handing it over to the guest. I saw him opening it and his face was ashen. Immediately I smelt something was wrong and asked for that diary cover. In that my son had coolly kept a bill for the dinner we served. How innocent kids are. After that I explained everything to my son.

I also want to add that now my son is very much interested in cooking and experiments a lot.

He was very active and used to participate in every competition that was conducted for his class. His favourite was the quiz and he has won many prizes for that. Once for the Republic day celebration his teacher selected him for a small stage programme in which he had to represent a South Indian couple. He was taught a few dance steps to perform while making an entry on the stage which my son could not digest. He had a long face when he came home and told me. ‘Mom you must tell the teacher dance is not for me’. Other competitions are ok. He was very sure of what he wanted and I never forced him to do things which he never liked. So I told him to cooperate with the teachers for that programme.I could not believe my eyes when he came on stage with wonderful steps and made everyone wonder if he was attending any dance classes.

This one really surprised me. My son gave me some advice when he was only in 5th. There was a problem in our family. I felt I was alienated and I was very much depressed. I worked like an automaton and as my husband was away I felt totally helpless. My son was observing me. When he talked to me nothing was getting registered in my mind and I was not replying to his questions. Seeing my condition he told me “Mom, you are not listening to me at all. Why are you worrying? What ever others say, don’t take it in. Take it through one ear and let it go out through the other”. It still rings in my ear. My son was putting some sense into me which I never learnt in any of my books. Children are individuals. Mischief is part of their life .if there is no mischief there will be only dullness in life. It is parents duty to understand them respect them as individuals.

I have thoroughly enjoyed my son’s childhood and I have given my best. My son has grown but he knows there is a shoulder waiting for him in case he needs.

Cheers

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