Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Kelloggs teaches buddy parenting

Little Rahul filled in the slam book slowly, reading every question carefully. It was a cute thing for an eight year old kid to fill in “MY DAD” in the blank for “Your best friend”. I asked him how was dad his best friend, to which he replied innocently, “He plays football with me. Dad lets me buy fruits of my choice. I eat and exercise with him.”
“Exercise? You exercise with your dad?” I was stunned.

“When he goes for jogging, I also run with him. Dad told me jogging is the best exercise” Rahul said licking his chocolate. His dad arrived in some time to pick little Rahul from the crèche and he ran to him, dropping his lunch box. Rahul’s father picked up the lunch box, nodded to me with a smile and politely asked me if Rahul was naughty or misbehaving in the crèche.

“Not at all. He is friendly, shares his stuff with other kids, and does not fight at all. You have given him the right values with buddy parenting Mr. Kapoor,” I appreciated Mr. Kapoor, Rahul’s best friend.
That is how every parent of modern time. “Getting involved” is the key to the same. Unless you step into the world of your kids, how on Earth would you understand him/her? Likewise, get kids involved you, behave like their friends, else the generation gap might keep increasing, and you would say “Kids don’t listen. They are beyond control”.

Spare the rod and spoil the child, many years ago had raised questions everywhere. So, buddy parenting is the safest bet, where an active participation of both parents and kids actually unlocks childhood. Unfortunately, the upbringing of kids was very different during my time. There was cordial relation between my parents & me sans friendliness. To me, my parents were my guardians whom I was scared of, but not someone whom I could share my secrets with. Yes I loved them, but could not express. Same was for my parents. Today when I look back into time, I realize there was a lack of openness, unlike the current times, where parents treat their kids like their buddies.

Today's mothers, whether working or housewives, get involved in their kids’ lives actively. Befriending their kids friends or helping kids with their homework and in return learning the latest gadgets creates a strong bond between the two. Such things actually nurture kids with the correct values from the beginning. One of my close friends' mother proudly shares with me her secret of kids' bonds and her. She taught her daughter unique easy recipes and in return learnt computers from her. Auntie does not depend on anybody for a printout or google an article, while Nidhi, my friend has won several hearts with her cooking skills taught by auntie. They confide in each other and guard each others' secrets. Nidhi grew up as a happy kid, with her mom as her best friend besides her.  They play video games together! Such is the magic of buddy parenting.

I have often heard parents scolding their kids when they ask for a cycle or bike. The argument that parents went to college in bus or walked for miles to reach school, is absolutely irrelevant. Times have changed. You might have used typewriters in your young days. Your child will not use a typewriter just because you did. So you see, a bike or a cycle may be a necessity for children. Ask them, understand their needs before shutting them up.
Chocos ad featuring Juhi Chawla is a perfect embodiment of the right values. As Juhi’s son teaches her palying video game, he loses to her. The smart mom subtly teaches her son that to win or lose is a part of the game. And the duo spring to their feet for another match! A mutual and loving relationship with buddy parenting is displayed here.

Lets be buddy parents to our kids so that they are confident, happy and open.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Hug your dad

As I write this post, my eyes are welled up already. It’s been a long year of illness and recovery for my dad. As my whole family is constantly on toes to make him feel better, it just took a warm hug to see him smile and feel positive. Last year when dad underwent a by-pass heart surgery, something very strange happened. While in ICU recovery post operation, dad witnessed a man die on the operation table. The deceased gentleman’s family raised a hue and cry and blamed the doctors for the unfortunate death. The entire scenario shook and scared dad. Fearing for his own life, he removed the drips and walked out of the ICU. The doctors or nurses could not calm him as he demanded a quick discharge from the hospital, refusing to enter the ICU room again. The staff called me to handle the situation. I rushed to the 3rd floor, where I found dad sitting outside the ICU, tired, upset and scared. He whispered into my ear about the patient’s operation that went awry, calling it a conspiracy of the doctors. He feared the doctors would poison him as well. The nurses were warned by my dad to stay away from him. I felt helpless and worried when a sense of responsibility ruled my senses. I stepped into my mother’s shoes that moment. When my constant consoling and assurance did not budge him, the only thing I could think was a hug. I pressed his palm gently and then hugged him tightly. It calmed him down a great extent. The warm embrace did the magic, what doctors or my words could not do. That hug was a life-saving hug for dad. He felt assured and safe after my hug and entered the ICU.

That stage was, what the doctors later told me, a psychosis attack.
I want to hug my dad every day to assure him of good health, to make him feel positive, to support him emotionally and moreover to thank him for everything. Thanks is a small word in return of all the gestures and his acts of responsibility towards his family. 
During my school days when my mom made me learn riding a cycle, it was dad who taught me saving money for situations like cycle breakdown. I owe a hug to him for the sense of caution he instilled in me.
When my mom was reluctant to send me to Delhi for job, it was dad who supported me. He brushed his emotions aside and allowed me to shift to the capital city so that I turn independent and strong. I owe a hug to my dad for shaping me into an independent bold person.

My first job in Delhi was not easy and the thought of quitting had clouded my thoughts. It was dad who encouraged me to stay put and lectured me on not giving up. I continued my job amid all hardships and turned the tough ways in my favor. I owe one hug to him for standing by me patiently and inspiring me.

An honest, grounded and patient person, my dad has given me all the joys and love I could ask for. I cannot stop thanking God for blessing me with a father like him. A hug to dad will be the smallest thing in return.
This father’s day, I am expressing my love towards my dad by participating in the #HugYourDad activity at BlogAdda in association with Vicks