You don't really expect your kids to warm
the cockles of your heart. You can't really anticipate when they will fill you
with gratitude. And you definitely won't be prepared for that moment when a
mature voice emerges from a 7-year-old.
Twice, in one week.
My niece had her first birthday coming up. And, I really wanted to go shopping
and pick out a special outfit for her. But, the nasty flu decided to
play spoilsport. So, feeling very sorry for myself, I outsourced the task
to my mother-in-law and asked Gy to go along. After 3 hours, when I was just
about beginning to wonder what had happened to them, the duo returned and my
mom-in-law had a glint in her eye and a barely suppressed smile. She waited
till Gy had left the room and said to me, 'You would be so proud of Gy.'
Curious and obviously stoked, I asked her what had happened. Gy had walked into
the store and looked all around. When she was satisfied that the place stocked
good dresses, she asked the salesman to show her an array of outfits. She spent
well over an hour- looking at patterns, ooh-ing over designs, rejecting colours
that wouldn't suit my niece and picking out fabrics that would be comfortable
on an infant's body. When she finally zeroed in on a dress, the salesman handed
Gy the outfit, saying that it would fit a one-year-old perfectly. She politely
returned it and said, 'Yes, but can I please have it one size bigger? So that
she can wear it for longer?' The salesperson was taken aback but clearly
Before paying for the outfit, my mom-in-law asked Gy if she was sure that I
(meaning me), would approve of the outfit, Once again, she very sweetly told
(Grandma), it's not important if Amma
(Mom) likes it. P
(my niece) should feel comfortable in it. After all, she is the one who has to
wear it.' Her grandmother almost exploded with pride and love for Gy at that
Hardly a day later, I got to know that P(my niece) was down with the flu and
hence, the birthday party had to be cancelled. My mom called me up to tell me
this and asked me to break the news gently to Gy, since she had been looking
forward to the party.
I waited for Gy to get home from school and while she ate her lunch, I informed
her that P was unwell and that we wouldn't be having a party. Gy looked at me
with concern and said, 'Amma, I just hope that P feels better soon. What is the
point of a party if P is not well enough to enjoy it? We can always have a
party later, can't we?'
As if turned to stone, I stood before her, not knowing what to say. Never would
I have expected a child to speak in that mature tone, reserved for a lady.
Contemplating all this, I pondered when she had gained the wisdom that she
displayed this week. Was it by observation or instruction? Did it mean the
gradual loss of innocence and the certain manifestation of reality?
And, yet, she can laugh out loud when her dad cracks a joke at her expense or
when she is lost in the world of animation. This was taken this morning, as she
eagerly followed the exploits of Bolt, one
of my all-time favourite movies!
In my heart, I pray that she can maintain this incredible juxtaposition of qualities- to be mature and to be joyful- all through her days. For, what better way to enjoy life, if not through the twin lenses of humour and wisdom?
Linking up this post to YeahWrite's weekly challenge grid #141
Labels: gratitude, maturity, parenting, yeahwrite