I was nine years old when the movie Bombay was released. Our whole extended family had gone to watch it in a theater nearby. In those days kids below the age of five were not required to get themselves tickets and additionally not be allotted seats as well. And like all law abiding Indian citizens, my parents decided to follow the rule to the tee.
Hence they had to present me as a five year old to the ticket checker.
Who on his part gave quite a stare to my visibly not comfortable uncle finding himself in the eye of the storm as he was carrying me ( at four feet ten inches I was a rather tall kid back then!). But nevertheless the man of the hour allowed us all in. Not before he shook his head in slight contempt.
In the movie, I sat in my aunt’s lap and it was her copious tears throughout the emotional scenes that left me not only half sitting and half swinging on her legs but also visibly drenched on the sleeve.
Why did I narrate this today?
Because Bombay as a form of art or expression had a deep impact on my psyche as a child. One that remained with me all my life. It spoke to me about choices (how they marry for love) and bonds that permeate all other entanglements (the two fathers in law in attempt to save each other, die).
Again, why am I narrating this tonight?
I was discussing a wide range of subjects with husband and a friend tonight. Among a lot of things and ideas that were exchanged, what kept striking me were my attempts to build certain viewpoints on emotions I had experienced eons away.
A lifetime beyond of thoughts flooded my mind.
And I was surprised how very similar my ideologies have remained.
It got me thinking even further. Are we then only as much as we were as a child?
This thought scares me a little.
I had a grandmother who narrated the Bhagwat Gita and Vedas to me as a kid. Who forced me to walk out of the house imagining the wind could speak its mind to me.
A mother who despite being a very sensitive person, kept telling me “As long you believe what you are doing is right, go kill someone and I will back you up.” (Rather strong advice for a seven year old, I agree 😀 ).
And a father who refused to believe her daughters were going to be any less than a boy in the house and ensured it never was.
My point is are we as societies doing enough for our kids? Our we allowing them the wings they need? Are we making them discover things as they are and not as we wish them to be?
I do not have any answer tonight. Do you? Do you believe we are doing enough for our kids to form their lives their ‘own’ right way?
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Forming someone’s character into believing what is right and wrong is very important. As you rightly said, how many parents teaching about ethics?
Teaching ethics yes. But teaching their own and all parents are humans no? So how are they factoring this is my question.
The movie does make all of us think. And then again it is all about how the kids are brought up. But then again, some kids go out and learn for themselves. Be it good, or bad. Sadly, it all is a chance that one has to take.
Chance with better inputs can be more safe no?
Very tough imaginaing back then….today’s kids have wide choices which we did not have around 3 decades back…
More so. We need more channelised control over parenting then..
As a parent, I think we do the best we can to guide our kids in the right direction and give them the information they need to make good choices and better decisions.
Bang on Kathy 🙂
I don’t know Richa…I guess some of us are doing it while some may not be…And unless we become parents ourselves I feel it is very difficult to understand this really…
Perhaps preparedness can exist? No?
People from urban areas in India have grown up really well in dealing with their kids, though I am very sure the percentage is way too low in least known cities. And if the kids from those rural areas become famous of their work, we’ll come to know about their story through social network, media… or via Kaun Banega Crorepati. Overall I feel the pace is really good, as compared to my childhood times. Especially post “Taare Zameen Par” loud voice.
Thanks for taking me to flashback Richa 🙂
I am glad you liked the writing Tara… but yes maybe urban parents are better off but there the distractions for kids are so many that the levels of parenting need to be a lot more high as well..
A few days back my daughter said that she always wanted to be a doctor, but after visiting an old age home, now she knows why. She’ll turn fourteen soon. Kids learn a lot from us and the way we interact with people. They’ll listen to us, if we take interest in their talks.
Nice Payal, this kind of backing up kids decisions makes them more confident I feel. No?
I am not a parent but I guess parents lay the foundation of our lives, moulding us over time and finally letting us move out of their nest to find a world of our own, with our own beliefs & judgement; many parents try to hold on and postpone this but when the time finally comes they have to let go and they do. Education is the best gift our parents give us, for with it we learn to form our own judgement & opinions, which may or may not be the same with our parents.
Education goes a long way but not all the way. Awareness about other factors and elements combined with education can assist, I feel.
Sometimes parents blindly love their kids and give them advice that is uncalled for…..It is important to teach empathy and love for each one of us. It is important also for a parent to become less selfish when it comes to their children.
Lovely thought Sunaina- need to be less selfish, yes.