Very recently I read a question in the community section where a mother is worried about how to feel detached with respect to her child.
This made me reflect upon the parenting skills I am using and is it helping my daughter?
My mother was a home maker and I have seen her spending all her life taking care of me and my elder brother.
So much so that even now she gets bothered if anything, as per her expectation, goes wrong in our lives.
My mother is a patient of hypertension and diabetes and she also has heart issues.
When I married and got pregnant, my husband told me-” I do not want you to be like your mother who is suffering just because her kids are not doing well as per her understanding”.
He wanted me not to be so attached to the child i will be bringing into this world.
I thought he has gone crazy. How can a mother not be attached with her child?
When my daughter was born I was not blessed with enough time to love her because of some personal reasons that included my bed ridden mother in law and my own depression.
When my daughter, at 18 months, was diagnosed with acute bronchitis, I panicked. I became over protective, her smallest coughing would wake me up. I stopped sending her to pre school, no bathing before 11 am. I became obsessive of excessive cleaning as i thought her condition can worsen due to all the dust around.
Slowly my health conditions deteriorated and i became stressed, agitated and very very lethargic.
I was unintentionally becoming like my mother and may be my husband was right in warning me beforehand.
I had to change my approach.
My daughter then was treated with antibiotics, almost for a year, along with nebulizer.
Then she was treated by a homeopathic doctor for another 2 years.
Once pandemic came, she was fine for two years.
Why I am telling you this because all this while , she will be turning seven in a week’s time, I only focused on how can i serve her.
There were times when I missed playing with her, but also i have fond memories of when I really spent a good time listening to her blabbering, cuddling her, kissing her,hugging her.
And in this process I understood the meaning of the word detachment. I am attached to my daughter, I love her but my attachment is not becoming an obstacle in my parenting or her growth.
Once I read somewhere when Arjuna asked Lord Krishna about the parenting in Kalyuga. Lord replied that parents will be over possessive so much so that they will harm their own kids due to ignorance.
I see that happening. In our times, our parents didn’t know about how our schoolmates or teachers are treating us (until something was very serious) or how we are being taught or punished. But now, with more accessibility, parents are always monitoring teachers and complain on the smallest issue their child face in the class. I counsel so many fellow parents on this issue.
Somewhere we want our children to get the best. We want them to master every available skill in the market so that we can bring up a perfect child , a perfect adult and a perfect human being.
I too was no different than many.
I always wanted to learn piano but couldn’t. Because it was my unfulfilled desire, I enrolled my daughter in a piano class.
She started off very nicely but within 3 months her interest was gone.
Then she herself came to me one day and showed interest in learning Bharatanatyam. I thought this will be also a temporary phase and just to check whether she is really interested or not I simply enrolled her in an online dance class.
To my utter surprise, it’s been more than 6 months and she is still going strong.
This episode made me learn my lesson- that what I think is good for her may not be the truth.
Instead of clipping her wings under my desires, I should let her fly by allowing her to make her own choices.
Very recently one day she came back from school and started to cough. And then very next day she got high fever. It is not unusual because in Delhi I am used to her falling sick very often.
However after 3 days I found out one night she was bleeding from her nose and it was not stopping even after 20 minutes.
Somehow I managed and her bleeding stopped. Next day was her English examination.
I got her up and was making her ready for school, when I noticed the blood coming from her nose and mouth profusely this time.
Even after 40 minutes the blood did not stop. Suddenly there was a big mucus filled blood clot which came out from her mouth. It was a panicking situation and definitely an emergency.
I called her doctor but he was not responding because it was very early in the morning.
I decided to rush her into the emergency at Fortis Hospital, Vasant Kunj.
Before leaving house I did not show a single sign of panic and the result was, even after so much blood coming out from her mouth and nose, my daughter was smiling and there was not even a single tear in her eyes.
The best part was she asked, mumma which hospital are you going to take me, and when I said it is in Vasant Kunj, she happily said my school is just few kilometres away from that hospital please dress me up as I want to appear for my exam today.
I did as she suggested. When i came down to drive i saw my car had a flat tyre. I still drove to the nearest mechanic, woke him up got it repaired. All this while i was singing or talking to my daughter.
I then took her to the doctor, got the medicines. Then my daughter put tissues under her nose, we went to school , she gave her exam and came out after 20 minutes saying mumma there was only one spelling mistake.
On our way back, she was feeling very weak due to too much blood loss, she smiling said,” I love you.”
This incident made me realise that how minutely the child observes their parents.
Had I or her father panicked even for a single moment, though we were worried inside but we did not reflect it on our faces, my daughter would have got scared too.
We did not show a single emotion which could make her feel that this situation is not critical and can be managed. And that gave her the mental strength to appear for her exam.
(that’s a different story that i cried my heart out later when she went to sleep for 4 hours at a stretch😃)
The doctor advised her complete bed rest for 5 days but I decided to take her out of Delhi. The doctor said he will not be responsible for any mishap. But within me, i had this faith that she will be fine soon if i take her out.
I chose to take her to Nainital and I can proudly say she recovered within 2 days.
Sometimes as parents we try our best for our children but life has other plans.
Further i believe acceptance helps us a lot too. When my daughter was diagnosed with triggered thumb i simply accepted the situation and now she too is comfortable with her situation. Though i might get her operated once she is in her teens but for the moment we have accepted her thumb as it is.
Finally, faith plays a bigger role. Not because i have a guru or ishta and they are bound to help me or my family. But because i know there is a force which runs this creation. Living with nature for two years has taught me many lessons. The force which is guiding all the living creatures and they function smoothly in absolute harmony, will definitely guide us when needed.
I firmly believe our children have their own destiny and journey so that their souls can evolve too. We are just there to hold their hands when needed.
Why am I sharing all this, because to all the parents here I want to tell one thing – please understand we as parents always want the best for our children but we may not be capable enough to decide what is best for them.
We are still struggling with our challenges, identity, marriage, career, finances even spirituality.
So how can we think that we own them and we only know what’s best for them?
We can simply tell them the pros and cons of any situation or circumstances, as per our limited understanding, that we may think is going to affect them. Rest is their life and lessons.
Swami Ji says suffering is alignment. I understand it now very well.
I would really request you all to just enjoy their childhood . See them growing up. What I missed when my child was of an age where I could have played with her I am trying to compensate it now.
Be their friends and they will learn by observing you.