How my Second Son Raises Me?

After raising one for 14 years, you would think I got some tricks of the trade under my belt.

Sadly, no.

I begin all over with the second one.

Take for example, yesterday’s bedtime happenings.

Adi stuck with homework.
Kumar sitting beside Adi and playing chess on his computer.

I am tasked with getting Ari to call it a day and go to sleep. I am bring him to bed and say – “Dey Ari, Amma is sick and tired. She really needs some sleep.”

Then, I lie down beside Ari and proceed to pull up my reading list on the phone and start reading.

He gets up and leaves. Then, comes back with a reading light and book.

He says – “You are going to put down your reading and go to sleep. If not, I am going to read too.”

Checkmate.

I have no freaking clue of how to raise this one.

There is nothing Sexy about being a Parent

There is nothing sexy about being a parent. It is often boring and tiresome.

Day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year…you wake up and do what humanity has done for its off spring to thrive.

Yet, when Kumar wakes up before all of us…then starts nagging us to wake up and proceeds to pick up Ari and carry him to the rest room to get him started on his morning chores….despite his yelling louder than my alarm clock to get me to wake up or else (some empty threat)…parenting doesn’t seem to be boring or tiresome.

In fact, I find the whole thing quite amusing and rather delightful.

Even my Coffee is not my OWN

I understand nothing belongs to ME.
I do.
We came with nothing.
We leave with nothing.
I get it.

That said, everything gets raided by the boys.

My books.
My laptop.
My phone.

There is no privacy even in the bathrooms.
Speaking of bathrooms, when you live with 3 boys, the toilet seat is always up. URGH.

Today afternoon, I did my usual to get through the rest of the day.
Put some coffee in a cup.
Pour some milk.

Before sticking the cup in the microwave, I paused to make a snack for Ari.
By the time I turn back, the ravenous 7 year old was raiding my yet-to-heat-coffee.

EVEN. MY. COFFEE. IS. NOT. MY. OWN.

I am going to start crying now.

I get it.
There is bigger problems in the world – like hunger, cancer and wars.
But, please.
Don’t start with me.
I don’t want to hear about it.

Let me mourn the loss of my coffee.
Save your lecture for another day.

Will you?

Isn’t Life about Second Chances?

God is super smart.
Wherever he is.

I also bet he is putting big data analytics to use.
How else would he know that I went through my first time second-grade-parent experience in a rush?

He has figured it all out.
He wants me to make amends.

So, guess what?

He is giving me a second chance to go to second grade musicals and thoroughly enjoy them.

Today morning, he somehow ensured that I showed up at this young fellow’s classroom musical titled earth Vs space mice.

Thank you God. You sure are keeping up with technology.

P.S. This post is intended with all due respect to God. I don’t mean to hurt anybody’s feelings with jest about God. I truly believe God gives us second chances. It is up to us to recognize those second chances, make the most of them and be eternally grateful.

Parenting Wreaks Havoc on One’s Belief System

Parenting wreaks havoc on one’s belief system.
You go from an “individual” to “us”.
Nothing…not friendship…not family…not marriage…nothing alters one’s belief system than when one holds one’s own.

Caring, feeding, hoarding, protecting…all these gerunds take on new meaning.
Suddenly, Maslow’s hierarchy need pyramid is doubled….one for you and one for your child.

There is several ways to raise a child.
For me, it is the  “it takes a village to raise a child” approach.
I believe I need everybody around me to help my child.
To raise, to nurture, to feed, to laugh, to cry, to hold, to motivate, to heal, to everything….it is not just me. There is a village. It is a powerful village.

I also believe raising my child is not a zero-sum game.
Somebody doesn’t have to lose for my child to win.

I believe life is bountiful and I lead my child to believe the same.
I don’t have to hoard resources for my child.

I don’t inculcate the scarcity mentality.
I lead him to believe the world is his…..and his is the world.
He has to go forth and conquer it with love and passion.

I am open minded. I try my best not to judge anybody or their choices. Because, everybody has their own story.
Over the years, I have had numerous “interesting” encounters with those who raise the next generation.
The kind ones.
The generous ones.
The open minded ones.
The ones that urge me to be a better parent.
The ones that teach me resources are endless.
Then, there are the ones that want to hoard.
The ones that believe in the zero-sum game.
The ones who hold on so tightly to the scarcity mentality.

It is everybody’s karma. What is right for them might not be right for me. And, my outlook to life might not be right for them.

Our children are going to do what they see us do.
If we believe in the zero-sum game….they will too.
If we hold on tightly to the scarcity mentality…they will too.

If we believe the world is bountiful…they will too.
If we teach them to go forth and conquer the world with love and passion…they will too.

Which side are you on? What is your belief system? What do you teach? Whatever the case might be….I urge you to think about this topic. Because, this parenting stuff  is some serious business.

I am forever grateful to those of you who are in my life and influence and inspire me with the great style of your own parenting. You might have shared with me just one insight long ago over coffee…or you might chat with me every day, every week, every month and ask how the heck I am doing. You check in on me, help me see the light and urge me to do the right thing. For that and more, I am grateful.

Our parenting story has to be one of that special bond with the spouse, the family, the community…because we realize we are all in this together. It is the story of us feeling vulnerable and strong…all at once. It is the story of humanity’s struggle to protect its off-spring and send them forth to a brighter and happier world. It is the story of nature manifesting intelligence and kindness. We are the generation that is holding the baton to raise the “next” generation. I wish all of you good luck with your parenting. Stay Strong.