Fragile Childhood | Vanisha Uppal

One day during a conversation with my 12 year old daughter Vrinda, she told me that “Aannya, my friend, is just an average student of my class”

“And how can you say that?” I asked

Vrinda: “She scored 80% marks in the exams, and most of my classmate gets more than 90% marks”

I made fun of the situation and said “In that case you must be considered a below average student as you scored 75%”

We ended up laughing.

All the concept of right and wrong has mostly been taught by our parents and teachers, then why the children are held responsible for their attitude?

While I was writing this article, coincidentally, Neha a friend, called up and said, “I am so pissed off with this system of education. My son’s teacher gave him less marks on writing the answers in his own words. The school just gives students marks for reproducing answers through rote learning. How to make them understand that bookish language is not as important as the understanding of the subject?”

I asked “But why are you bothered about him getting less marks?”

When Vrinda, my daughter was in the primary class, one day she came to me and said “mom, how to learn the text book answers? It is difficult to memorize word by word from the notes”

I said “It is very simple, just read it once carefully and write what you understood in your own words, like a story”

She did exactly that and she found it easy. After her school test she told me that her teacher did not give full marks on her answers.

I said, “But I am very happy that you understood the concept”

We hugged each other and celebrated her performance. She did the same for another few academic years. She was more relaxed during her exams and gradually not only did she scored better marks, but also became more creative and independent.

We cannot change the world by telling others not to pressurize our child; but it is in our hand not to pressurize them. As a parent the balance is missing in us; either we over pamper our child or send them to the boarding school to disciple them.

One day I thought it will be nice to give surprise to my friend by making a sudden visit. I rang the doorbell of her house. Her son opened the door. He is 12 years old and told me that mom was not at home. I asked him “how are your studies and school?”

He said “mom has sent me to the boarding school. And now I am on vacation”

I said, “Oh, how do you find the new place?”

He said, “Aunty,first year was very difficult but now I have adjusted”

The way he said that, something touched me. When we are at the job, we work as per norms. We make adjustments according to others, but what comforts us at the back of our mind is, when will the day will be over and we can go back home and relax in the way we want.

The net situation would be like this; we send kids daily to the school for some hours. At home they are free to sit, sleep, play and talk; to demand their favorite food and attention; to get a hug whenever they want. The power of hug is often underestimated. The simplest thing can change a child to a happy child. A hug means acceptance, it is a need like air, water and food.

No one can handle and love our child better than us. There always will be some challenges dealing with our children, their tantrums, anger, frustration and other negative emotions. Nectar cannot be attained without holding the poison in throat.

I still remember, when I used to annoy papa or misbehave. He never shouted or made face or said any harsh words to us. What I saw in his eyes was rather amazing; infinite Ocean of love and patience. It was so very beautiful; how his anger used to transform into love every time. No theory, no psychology; only pure love that he had inside him. Surprisingly my anger vanished by seeing those loving eyes. Sometimes I intentionally pushed him to be angry at me to see those eyes again. I was deeply in love with those eyes and wanted the same for myself. He is no more, but, whenever I close my eyes, I can feel his love.

I love you so much papa.

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