Skip to main content

Questions, Fears and Many Answers

After all the fairy tale drama that is ensuing in our life and honestly some of it before  (we- me and the daughter are very melodramatic people) there have been questions and often random statements by Netra that make me wonder how she must have concluded this one or that one. Like when she said very matter-of-factly Love to bhoot hota hai (Love is a ghost) or when the husband and I are arguing heatedly, she will coolly walk up to us and depending on her current favourite, threaten the other one, Main thunder ko bolun ki aapko le jaaye? (Should I tell thundering clouds to take you away for making such ruckus).

She plays with the bottles- her nanhe bachhe- for hours together and can come back with an episode that happened to her in the previous school and ask for an explanation about being bullied or left out of a game in the neighbourhood. These are the ones that I particularly find hard to answer. Human behaviour is difficult to explain, no? But then maybe she can use some advice from  Mark Twain from the book Advice to Little Girls on various other important matters like a pesky mother and her list of chores.

Then there are questions about the universe. Hum kiss cheez se bane hote hain? (What are we made of?) Humko khaanaa kyun khaanaa padta hai? (Why do we have to eat?) I can deal with them, I have studied science. 

Hum apne ghar pe horsie rakh sakte hain? (Can we keep a horse in the house?) Mujhe ek zindaa kutta chahiye, chottaa sa. (I want a dog, alive and small in size.) Animals are not my forte so I leave this to the husband.

Out of many things that Mon Cheri stumbles upon during the course of day varies. When the question will be popped, no one can predict. I try my level best to answer everything and not get worked up by the fury of her questioning when she gets really charged up about the subject but there are times and demands that irk me. I dont want to instill in her any fear about questioning or life. About life and its fears in the offing I read to her this poem by Maya Angelou who says she wrote it “for all children who whistle in the dark and who refuse to admit that they’re frightened out of their wits”:

Life Doesn’t Frighten Me

Shadows on the wall
Noises down the hall
Life doesn’t frighten me at all

Bad dogs barking loud
Big ghosts in a cloud
Life doesn’t frighten me at all

Mean old Mother Goose
Lions on the loose
They don’t frighten me at all

Dragons breathing flame
On my counterpane
That doesn’t frighten me at all.

I go boo
Make them shoo
I make fun
Way they run
I won’t cry
So they fly
I just smile
They go wild

Life doesn’t frighten me at all.

Tough guys fight
All alone at night
Life doesn’t frighten me at all.

Panthers in the park
Strangers in the dark
No, they don’t frighten me at all.

That new classroom where
Boys all pull my hair
(Kissy little girls
With their hair in curls)
They don’t frighten me at all.

Don’t show me frogs and snakes
And listen for my scream,
If I’m afraid at all
It’s only in my dreams.

I’ve got a magic charm
That I keep up my sleeve
I can walk the ocean floor
And never have to breathe.

Life doesn’t frighten me at all
Not at all
Not at all.

Life doesn’t frighten me at all.

I don't think she understand much of it right now but I think this will be our 'If' - THE parental advice- for the nearby times to come.

And to answer her questions or to pacify me when the next time she says Love to bhoot hai, I must remember to peek inside a book called Big Questions from Little People.  


Popular posts from this blog

A case for non-fiction or better understanding of kidlit

If you are a parent there are more chances than one that YOU have handed your child a book to read. Or you have chosen to bring home the books that you think that she might like to read. If any of these hold true then we are almost alike and no this is not an article that tells you how wrong you have been all along in bringing your child the books that you choose. This is just a few of my thoughts on this very subject
that I gathered today morning as I wrote an Instagram post.

Let me begin at the beginning.
Today my soon to be 4, son sat down with a book and was at it for good 10-15 minutes. No, it wsn't a tome. It wa a small picture book on trucks. My friend gifted him this book on trucks on his first birthday. The chap was fascinated with it from the moment he got it. You could flip pages and see bright pictures of different types of trucks and then you could open little sliding screens to find out men in uniform who drove a certain kind of truck.

Unsurprisingly his first words …

Reusable cotton pads: My first experience

I had been trying to bring changes for a sustainable living for a while now and using reusable cotton pads for Aunt Flo's monthly visits was an idea that appealed massively to my senses. After searching here and there I found a Kolkata based manufacturer- Shomota- who were also involving women from underprivileged background in manufacturing these pads as well as sharing the profit from sales to make these pads available to girls and women in interiors of West Bengal. BONUS point- I have also come to realise that sustainability is more efficient and worthwhile if you choose local. Also the fact that we are dumping non biodegradable waste on the planet and that is equal to some sort of violence in my head and I have been brought up on the beliefs laid by the Arya Samaj movement, I needed a better option than the mass marketed sanitary pads. I looked and examined a few option that I realised were available to me before making up my mind on the reusable cloth pad.

Why I chose cloth p…

Of new resolutions and newer authors

The year has started on the right note. I have already read two authors whom I had not read before falling hard for the one being hailed as Japanese Steig Larrson- Keigo Hagashino.
That is what got me thinking about new year resolutions  (I know we are done with the first quarter) which I haven't made in years. So here is a list of authors that I would like to sample this year.
1. Manu Joseph
2. Pico Iyer
3. Anthony Horowitz
4. Margret Atwood
5. Toni Morrison
6. Chimamanda Adichie
7. Jo Nesbo
8. Neil Gaiman
9. Terry Pratchett 10. Alice Munro/  Walker
But I also realise the futility of making a list like this as there are just so many authors, poets, writers and just so many works coming to fore everyday. A book group might help, you would think but let me tell you that it complicates things further. New recommendations, fantastic and not so fantastic reviews, pictures, blog posts and what not really makes matter well,complicated.
All said and done, it is but human to try and so…