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Baby Blues – a humourous account of mothering two toddlers

September 30, 2006

Having babies – every girl’s dream. Seemed exciting and even easy to me. And it was! The childbirth I mean. Easy – compared to what came later. I wasn’t quite prepared you see. I had been taken in my the innocent look in the eyes of the baby in the ‘Baby Book’. So the day I saw the little wonder in my arms, I decided that out will go the job (and the monthly cheques) and in will come motherhood. Little did I imagine that I would have to give up the leisurely baths, hot coffees, the morning swims and the cosy dinners!

Oh ofcourse, I’ve got the world’s best little girls – no matter if their personalities are…ummm…on the stronger side. Tantrums? They are only a manifestation of their determined selves (or so I keep telling myself).

Unusual food habits? Not really. Whether it’s sliced apples and bananas with tomato sauce or raw garlic pods and celery sticks with tamarind chutney, the doctor says it’s alright. And who’s to argue with the doc?

I do put my foot down during eating out however. I can deal with strange looks while ordering odd items from the menu, but I cannot tolerate messy tables, innumerable visits to the loo or FFO ‘s (Flying Food Objects).

I have to keep telling myself that my kids are normal. If they try to fly, or think they are tigers or try to push each other off the balcony, I have to tell myself that other kids do it too. That there are parents out there putting up an equally brave front, desperately trying to hide the fear that something is wrong with their kids.

At times I have yearned for the good old days, when children quaked in fear in front of their parents. Today, it’s us who quake…with the kids’ piercing questions and high expectations.

Deadly questions like ‘How come you are watching Santa Barbara when I can’t?’ or ‘What new thing are you giving in my tiffin today?’ are guaranteed to consume any new parent with guilt.

I haven’t mentioned grandparents yet.

One can ignore books, doctors, friends and even relatives, but not grandparents. They will never fail to remind you how heartless a parent you are if you don’t serve Campa Cola and potato chips for lunch.

It wasn’t long before I realised that I had exchanged one high tension job for another higher tension job. In advertising products were at stake, but here, it was human lives I was dealing with. The future citizens of the world. I had to be careful not to damage their minds permanently with my sharp tongue, and not turn them into stunted retards by feeding them junk.

Luckily my childhood friend who had continued to work right through her babies set me right. It was an eye-opener for me to observe her three-year smear herself with mud accompanied by happy laughter (from the mother I mean).

‘Relax,’ she told me. ‘Enjoy your babies. And forget the baby in the book.’

Looking back, that was the best piece of advice ever given.

(Published in the Deccan Herald, Bangalore)

Related Reading: More posts on Humour

4 Comments leave one →
  1. October 15, 2006 11:21 pm

    it all rings so true, especially the grandparents comment.

    they were parents once too, you would think they would be a little more sympathic to your battles and trying to support your parenting beliefs rather than turn you into the “bad cop”. why is that?

    revenge for all of the things we did in our youth?

  2. October 16, 2006 9:31 am

    Hi trendygal! So glad that this touched a chord in you! I think its very complex why grandparents behave the way they do. I think partly its because there is a trace of envy about the new mother…but mostly its because they are insecure about the new ideas that have come up since they were parents and they want to tell us that the way they did it was right. Also, they do not have responsibility about the way the kid turns out, so in a way they are indulging themselves as well as the kid.

  3. October 27, 2006 7:34 am

    I felt good about this post. It confirmed for me some of the things I’ve been thinking about.

  4. vinod permalink
    July 24, 2008 2:44 pm

    I read somewhere that motherhood is equal to a job for a middle level manager in a corporation. I don’t remember precisely though.

    I think parenting is probably the most challenging job for any person. You will never know whether you got it right or wrong till the child is an adult and its too late. One can only hope that one tried their best as a parent in guiding their child and that things will turn out good. I guess it is very difficult for parents who have been earnest in their attempts and find that their child didn’t quite turn out as expected. I think it would take a lot of character to digest such perceived failures and not remorse in guilt.

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