Sunday, May 15, 2011

Mother's Day -- Not just for Mothers

 While reminiscing about my grandmother's house and my parents' house I recall being told not to do silly things, like reaching in the chicken coop and picking a chick then getting pecked. I know that for every little thing, we would go to my grandma and she always had nice words for us. Now, I do not remember if I was told that I was silly or stupid, or if it were my actions that were called stupid because it is an entirely different language, you know Hindi. I do not feel being hurt because we got the comfort right away.
However, when I moved to the US I realized that it is not nice to call kids names or make them feel bad when they are already feeling bad for their actions. I also noticed that a lot of couples live with little kids without their grandparents. So the family setup was different. My kids got the same setup as well. I came to understand that my kids are my world. Then  I became very careful about scolding and getting mad at kids because who would they go to if parents get mad at them? So to me, being a mother was being a friend to my kids. Now do friends call their friends stupid? I don't think so.
Last Sunday, my son took his five year old  and two year old kids and us to the zoo so my daughter-in-law could get some rest. It was a great gift. My two year old grandson fell asleep so I sat on a bench with him in my arms and everyone else walked around. I was watching people go by. There were kids getting their faces painted. I was having fun. Then I heard a man scolding his son. "How can you be so stupid? I just paid five dollars for that and you're messing up your face paint?"
The poor boy must have been hardly seven. He just started crying. His mother did not say anything, you know parents having uniformity in discipline and all. I felt like going and giving the little boy a hug. They just walked away and I had the baby in my arms. I was just thankful that my five year old grandson did not have to see that. It got me thinking, if  Mother's day is just about a mother?  I don't mean to make a big deal but times are changing. Kids are having it harder, so please don't hurt a kid's self-esteem.


Belle said...

Today, I overheard a woman call her grandson a terrible name. It upset me so much; I wanted to hold him as he was crying.
There are lots of people who should never have children. They don't have the talent or gift for it, and it is awful for the child.

Vanilla Mama said...

Very true - I have to remind my wonderful hubby about it every so often. Kids learn what you show them - so we have to show them compassion and love.

Drora's minimundo said...

I believe parents these days have to take special classes and learn to how to deal with their children. Family frames are totally different than they used to be. Alas, most of my generation, here in Israel did not have grandparents to comfort us when we were young.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Munir .. a wise thing to comment on - good for us to read .. and I can quite see where you're coming from .. So glad you had a lovely afternoon at the zoo .. and a wonderful gift to be there for your son's family and give them some extra time and help before number three appears! Enjoy - with thoughts - Hilary

Tracy said...

I just cringe when I hear parents say those things to their kids and it seems to happen more often, or perhaps people aren't as savvy hiding their comments?
regardless, it is shameful what parents do to their kids!
Great post and happy day!

Donna said...

I've seen that happen too and called a stranger on it in the ladies room one time. She said some choice words and ran out. I can only hope I gave her food for thought that may last somewhere. Plant a seed, hopefully.

Michael Offutt said...

Beautiful message you have here Munir. I think that you have a stronger grasp of what it is to be a parent because of your upbringing than is taught to people here in the U.S. The United States is a very selfish place. It's ruled by capitalism and people are brought up from an early age to accept that if someone isn't rich, it's because they are lazy good-for-nothings. This translates into a belief of superiority and selfishness that is central to most Americans in the way they deal with others. Neighbors put up walls because they don't want your crap affecting their house and they yell at kids because kids are doing something that upsets them.

Sylvia K said...

A beautiful message indeed, Munir. And what Michael has written is sad but true. I'm glad my four are already grown. I don't have any grandchildren and don't think I ever will as my kids have chosen very busy professions and have long said that if they couldn't be a really good parent, then they'd rather not be one at all. Thank you for visiting my blog and for your comment! Always appreciated!


Footprints of Peace said...

Well written. That's sad! I feel bad for the littler person. I remember being mean to my children when they were little, and now that I have grown into my parenting role, I can't tell them I'm sorry enough. In the beginning I parented like I was parented, and, now, I parent as God parents. :) There is something about having faith in someone wonderful and much larger than self. Again, well stated.